Politics & Policy

Tuesday Senate Scan

The Hill has some pretty sensible advice for Democrats trying to keep their seats this year: “Don’t mention you’re a Democrat.” Many are already taking it.

California: Rasmussen’s latest has Boxer leading by 4 points — 49 to 45 percent. Meanwhile, a new SurveyUSA poll shows Sen. Barbara Boxer leading Carly Fiorina by 3 points — 46 to 43 percent — among likely voters. Both have the support of at least 80 percent of their respective parties, but Fiorina leads among independents 49 to 34 percent. But this is California, after all, and Fiorina certainly has her work cut out for her. Still, any incumbent who can’t crack the 50 percent mark at this point in the campaign has plenty to worry about as well.

Missouri: Robin Carnahan (D) has a new ad out that essentially accuses Rep. Roy Blunt (R) of blatant corruption — selling earmarks for campaign contributions. The ad centers on Blunt’s vote for a 2003 defense bill, and alleges that Blunt had an illicit relationship with a California company that received federal funding as a result of that bill:

Blunt’s campaign says the ad is “false,” and points out in response — without addressing the specifics of the allegations –  that the bill in question passed overwhelmingly in both houses and the Rep. Ike Skelton (D) and then-Sen. Jean Carnahan, Robin’s mother, both voted for the bill.

“I guess there’s some truth to the saying that Robin Carnahan would attack her own mother if she thought it would help her get elected,” said Blunt spokesperson Rich Chrismer.  ”With every outrageous false assertion, like those in this ad, Robin Carnahan is becoming more desperate.”  

In other news, Vice President Joe Biden will visit Springfield, Missouri on Thursday to attend a private fundraiser for Carnahan.

Washington: The NRSC released a new ad in the state today attacking Murray using a familiar theme: “18 years of reckless spending.”

Wisconsin: Last week, Sen. Russ Feingold told a crowd of not-so-enthused college kids that the Republican enthusiasm gap, which nearly every poll indicates, was “phony,” and that “Republicans are already dancing in the end zone.”

He must have been proud of that line, because he made a campaign ad out of it:

Republicans may not be dancing in the end-zone, but they are pointing to the scoreboard. Ten all at the start of the second half? The polls (and the calendar) suggest a different score. NRSC spokesman Chris Bond issued the following response:

No one – and I mean no one – is underestimating how desperate Russ Feingold is to cling to power as voters continue to reject his 18-year record of higher taxes, reckless spending, and skyrocketing debt in Washington.  Wisconsinites deserve better than another rubberstamp for the out-of-control Obama agenda, and although he may wish otherwise, Feingold can count on commonsense voters to continue to fight back hard against his partisan attacks and misleading rhetoric right through Election Day.

Feingold will face off with Republican opponent Ron Johnson in Milwaukee on Friday, Oct. 8, for the first of three debates between now and Election Day.

Andrew StilesAndrew Stiles is a political reporter for National Review Online. He previously worked at the Washington Free Beacon, and was an intern at The Hill newspaper. Stiles is a 2009 ...


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