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Franken and Ciresi Close In Further On Sen. Coleman in New Poll

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In a new poll released today by Rasmussen Reports, Republican Minnesota Senator Norm Coleman now holds 5 and 4-point leads over his chief rivals—Al Franken and Mike Ciresi respectively.

The poll, conducted September 6th of 500 likely voters in the Gopher State, finds Al Franken has closed the gap from a 46-36 deficit in a March 2007 Rasmussen poll to 46-41. Franken is only viewed favorably by 46 percent of Minnesotans, with a very high number (47 percent) already having an unfavorable view of the satirist and actor.

Mike Ciresi trails Coleman 46 to 42 percent and also has higher unfavorable numbers (43 percent) than favorable (40 percent).

Coleman's favorable numbers are actually quite good—54 percent—with 46 percent having an unfavorable view - Minnesotans seemed to have formed an opinion of their senior senator one way or the other. Coleman's problem is that he is unable to reach the 50 percent support mark in election matchups against his DFL rivals despite the high unfavorability rankings of Franken and Ciresi.

In the previous public polling matchups between the candidates (SurveyUSA, July 2007), Coleman had a 49-42 lead on Franken and 48-42 lead over Ciresi.

The new Rasmussen numbers indicate that Minnesota's Senate race remains one of the prized targets for the Democrats in the coming election.

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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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