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Clinton Not Gaining Ground In Wisconsin

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Despite surging to large double-digit leads in national Democratic presidential nomination polls, Hillary Clinton's support in the Badger State appears to remain stagnant.

In the most recent Gallup national poll taken in mid-August, Clinton had a 21-point lead over Barack Obama, 42 to 21 percent. The fact that Clinton nearly received more than 40 percent in a poll that also included (non-candidate) Al Gore (at 15 percent) indicates Clinton is making great strides in her national campaign among Democrats (Rudy Giuliani only received the support of 32 percent when matched up against his fellow GOP rivals in the August Gallup survey).

In Wisconsin, however, Clinton is not gaining ground against her chief Republican rivals in head-to-head pairings. In 7 months of consecutive polling by SurveyUSA, Clinton has failed to reach the 50 percent mark against Giuliani in every poll—in a state that has voted for the Democratic nominee in each of the last five presidential elections. In the mid-August 2007 SurveyUSA poll, Giuliani and Clinton were tied 46-46 in the Badger State—nearly identical to the 47-45 edge Giuliani held back in February 2007.

Neither does Clinton fare any better against struggling GOP candidate John McCain. In July 2006, Clinton held a 46-36 lead over McCain in a Rasmussen survey; in mid-August 2007 Rasmussen measured Clinton's advantage over McCain in Wisconsin to have been cut in half to just five points—44 to 39 percent.

When paired against Fred Thompson in Wisconsin, Clinton held a 46-43 percent lead in mid-April 2007 and a 48-45 percent lead in the most recent mid-August 2007 poll (SurveyUSA).

Finally, Clinton's lead over Mitt Romney has dropped from double digit leads in March (51-37), May (52-37), and July (52-39) to just 7 points in mid-August (49-42) (SurveyUSA).

Thus, while Clinton appears to be successful at the moment in bolstering the support of the Democratic base (expanding her lead nationally for the nomination), her raw numbers in general election matchups are not moving in her favor in key battleground states like Wisconsin.

Clinton has very high negative favorability numbers in Wisconsin (49 percent in a mid-August 2007 Rasmussen poll). This means Clinton will be fighting a difficult battle in her hopes to pry away enough independents and liberal Republican supporters to win the Badger State, should she become the Democratic Party nominee.

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Remains of the Data

No Free Passes: States With 2 Major Party Candidates in Every US House Race

Indiana has now placed candidates from both major parties on the ballot in a nation-best 189 consecutive U.S. House races, with New Hampshire, Minnesota, Idaho, and Montana also north of 100 in a row.

Political Crumbs

Gubernatorial Highs and Lows

Two sitting governors currently hold the record for the highest gubernatorial vote ever received in their respective states by a non-incumbent: Republican Matt Mead of Wyoming (65.7 percent in 2010) and outgoing GOPer Dave Heineman of Nebraska (73.4 percent in 2006). Republican Gary Herbert of Utah had not previously won a gubernatorial contest when he notched a state record 64.1 percent for his first victory in 2010, but was an incumbent at the time after ascending to the position in 2009 after the early departure of Jon Huntsman. Meanwhile, two sitting governors hold the record in their states for the lowest mark ever recorded by a winning gubernatorial candidate (incumbent or otherwise): independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island (36.1 percent in 2010) and Democrat Terry McAuliffe of Virginia (47.8 percent in 2013).


An Idaho Six Pack

Two-term Idaho Republican Governor Butch Otter only polled at 39 percent in a recent PPP survey of the state's 2014 race - just four points ahead of Democratic businessman A.J. Balukoff. Otter's low numbers reflect his own struggles as a candidate (witness his weak primary win against State Senator Russ Fulcher) combined with the opportunity for disgruntled Idahoans to cast their votes for one of four third party and independent candidates, who collectively received the support of 12 percent of likely voters: Libertarian John Bujak, the Constitution Party's Steve Pankey, and independents Jill Humble and Pro-Life (aka Marvin Richardson). The six candidate options in a gubernatorial race sets an all-time record in the Gem State across the 46 elections conducted since statehood. The previous high water mark of five candidates was reached in seven previous cycles: 1902, 1904, 1908, 1912, 1914, 1966, and 2010.


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