Tag Archives: 2016 Wisconsin US Senate race

Daily Kos Morning Digest 8/21/15… Russ Feingold is still beating Ron Johnson, though race has gotten tighter

Reposted from Daily Kos Elections by Jeff Singer
Russ Feingold
Democratic ex-Sen. Russ Feingold

Leading Off: WI-Sen: The good news for Republican Sen. Ron Johnson is that Marquette no longer has him down 16 points in his battle for re-election against Democrat Russ Feingold. The bad news is that he still trails by a 47-42 margin, which, suffice it to say, is not where an incumbent wants to find himself. It’s not clear why the gap would have closed so much—this early in the campaign, there really isn’t any good reason for polls to shift like this—but even so, the rest of Marquette’s findings aren’t very helpful for Johnson, either.

For one, Feingold remains more popular, with a 42-30 favorability rating, compared to 30-31 for Johnson. For another, Hillary Clinton is doing well, beating Jeb Bush 47-42 and Scott Walker 52-42. (As an aside, it’s amazing that Walker performs worse than Jeb.) If Clinton were to carry Wisconsin, as you’d expect, then Johnson would need a lot of her supporters to not vote a straight ticket and instead support him over Feingold. But in 2012, Republican ex-Gov. Tommy Thompson only performed about 1.5 net points better than Mitt Romney in that year’s Senate race, and Thompson had a much more moderate profile than Johnson.

And it’s even possible that Marquette’s new numbers are actually too optimistic for RoJo. A conservative group called Restoration PAC recently released internal polling that had Feingold ahead 50-42. If that’s the best that Republicans can come up with, well, that’s not very good. (Restoration tried to argue that their recent round of TV ads, the size of which they did not disclose, had improved Johnson’s standing. They should have just waited for Marquette!)

Marquette has a good reputation for accuracy, but again, this is a lot of movement, so let’s see what other pollsters say. Either way, though, Johnson is still in trouble.


AZ-Sen: It’s Gravis, so believe what you will, but they’ve got state Sen. Kelli Ward beating Sen. John McCain in the GOP primary, 45-36. Those numbers are probably too good to be true but they aren’t completely out of the realm of possibility, since PPP found McCain beating Chemtrail Kelli by a fairly soft 44-31 spread back in May. Meanwhile, Gravis has McCain on top of Democratic Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick 48-35, while Ward beats her by a much narrower 43-38 margin. PPP, by contrast, had McCain leading Kirkpatrick 42-36 (they didn’t test a matchup with Ward).

FL-Sen: This is completely gross: Florida Rep. David Jolly, a Republican running for Senate, is slated to appear as a “guest of honor” at a concert later this month hosted by the Church of Scientology celebrating the centennial of the town of Clearwater, where the “church” has a headquarters (which they call, in their paramilitary fashion, “Flag Land Base”). For those unfamiliar, Scientology is a cult masquerading as a religion that virtually enslaves its most loyal members, who spend their lives toiling in wretched conditions for the organization for almost no pay and are threatened with “disconnection” from their family and friends if they ever try to leave….


Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest 5/15/15… Russ Feingold is back

Reposted from Daily Kos Elections by Jeff Singer

Former Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold

Russ Feingold, the once and future senator?

Leading Off: WI-Sen: On Thursday, ex-Wisconsin Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold announced that he would seek a rematch with Republican incumbent Ron Johnson, who defeated him in 2010.

Both parties have been anticipating Feingold’s comeback bid for a while, especially after he resigned from his post as a State Department envoy to Africa a few months ago. However, Feingold has always been an unpredictable enough guy that we couldn’t be quite sure, but there’s no ambiguity anymore. There were a few Wisconsin Democrats who might have run against Johnson if Feingold had stayed out, but he shouldn’t face any real primary opposition now. The DSCC also wasted no time endorsing him.

Assuming Democrats hold the White House next year, they’ll need to net four seats to retake the Senate, and this looks like it will be one of their best opportunities. In March, PPP gave Feingold a strong 50-41 lead and last month, Marquette saw Feingold destroying Johnson by an astonishing 54-38 margin. Both pollsters found that Feingold’s favorable ratings have more than recovered since he was dumped 52-47 in 2010, while Johnson hasn’t made much of an impression in his time in the Senate.

The Badger State has favored Democrats in recent presidential cycles, and Feingold will be in a good position if the trend continues. Still, this isn’t a slam-dunk for Team Blue yet. Feingold has been insulated from partisan attacks for the last few years, and the GOP is going to do whatever they can to drag his image back into the muck. Johnson will have the money to do it: While the wealthy Republican has indicated that he won’t use his personal resources for this contest, there’s nothing stopping him from changing his mind.

By contrast, Feingold’s support for campaign finance reform could also hamper his fundraising in the post-Citizens United world. Feingold also ran a shaky campaign last time, and he could have problems if he hasn’t considered what went wrong in 2010. But Johnson isn’t exactly a disciplined candidate, and he could cause his party some avoidable problems.

Feingold’s return is good news for his party, but the GOP isn’t going to give up this seat without a fight. We’ll be watching all the developments at Daily Kos Elections…..


Russ Feingold Will run for the US Senate seat he lost in Wisconsin…

He’s Back!

And Democrats have to be be happy about this…And their chances to regain a majority in the Senate after 2016…

Russ Feingold announced Thursday he will run to reclaim the U.S. Senate seat he lost five years ago to Republican Ron Johnson, fulfilling the hopes of Democrats who have been pushing for the liberal to return to the political arena.

Feingold said in a 90-second video message obtained by The Associated Press before it was to be sent to supporters that he will run for the seat in 2016. He likely will face the incumbent Johnson, a political newcomer when he defeated Feingold by 5 points in 2010. If successful, Feingold would be only the third senator since 1956 to reclaim a seat.

Feingold, 62, served 18 years in the Senate before losing to Johnson. He sat out the 2012 recall election against Gov. Scott Walker, the race for an open Senate seat that fall, and Walker’s recall election in 2014. He will be running in a presidential year, when Democratic turnout will likely be stronger in Wisconsin than it was in the 2010 midterm when he lost.

In the video announcement filmed inside his home near Madison, Feingold said his “desire to serve is stronger than ever” and that he wants to fight to “bring back to the U.S. Senate strong independence, bipartisanship and honesty.”

Feingold said he intends to travel the state this summer “listening carefully to my fellow Wisconsinites talk about their concerns, especially when it comes to their economic well-being.”



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