From NBC’s “First Read”:
Toomey vs. Sestak: Countering other polls out there showing Pat Toomey (R) with a larger lead over Joe Sestak (D) in the Pennsylvania Senate contest, Democrats have handed First Read an internal poll (conducted by Dem pollster Fred Yang of 800 likely voters from Aug. 12-15), which shows Toomey with a more narrow two-point lead over Sestak in the head-to-head match up, 46%-44%, and a one-point lead when other third-party candidates are included, 43%-42%.
Now, it’s never a good thing when a party’s own poll has its candidate trailing — even within the margin of error — as this poll finds. But Democrats want to show the race is in play for them. Still, the party has to be a little nervous about the prospect of losing both the Senate and gubernatorial races in this state two years before the 2012 presidential election. Also keep this in mind about Pennsylvania: It will always be one of the Democrats more winnable Senate races.
Rasmussen has Pat Toomey leading Sestak by 9 points in its latest poll, released earlier this week. The Democrats will likely pour serious money into Pennsylvania to help Sestak close that gap (or widen his internal polling gap), which will make a potential Toomey win that much more devastating. When rallies with Bill Clinton still leave you down 9 points, you’re hitting a pretty high wall.
Also: First Read says the Keystone State “will always be one of the Democrats more winnable Senate races”. Why is that? Democrat strongholds of Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, of course. In Philadelphia, Michael Meehan and the Republican City Committee apparently isn’t interested in competing.
Pennsylvania is “purple” by choice, and mainly because Philadelphia’s Republican establishment doesn’t try.