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The Partisan Divide in Iowa

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A new Bloomberg / LA Times poll of likely caucus voters in Iowa demonstrates quite clearly how the view of the country is affected by one's political lens. While the outlook on the GOP side is not exceedingly optimistic, it seems so when paired against the glum worldview held by the Democrats.

Only 8 percent of those Democrats and independents voting in the Iowa Democratic caucuses believe the United States is headed in the right direction, with more than 11 times that number, 89 percent, of the view it is seriously off on the wrong track. More than half (53 percent) of Republicans and independents likely to vote in the GOP caucuses believe the country is going in the right direction, with 40 percent believing it is on the wrong track.

The difference in judging the state of the nation's economy also has a great partisan divide with Republicans (74 percent) nearly 50-points more optimistic that the economy is going well compared to the Democrats (28 percent).

The divide is even greater when assessing the Iraq war—73 percent of Republican caucus voters still believe it was worth going to war, while only 12 percent of Democratic caucus voters hold that view. However, despite 83 percent of Democratic voters believing it was not worth going to war, only 28 percent believe the troops should come home right away; 60 percent believe they should come home within the next year. Sixty-eight percent of Republican voters believe the troops should stay in Iraq "as long as it takes," compared to just 7 percent on the Democratic side.

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Remains of the Data

Gender Equality in the US House: A State-by State Quarter-Century Report Card (1989-2014)

A study of 5,325 congressional elections finds the number of female U.S. Representatives has more than tripled over the last 25 years, but the rate at which women are elected to the chamber still varies greatly between the states.

Political Crumbs

Final Four Has Presidential Approval

By edging Michigan in the final seconds Sunday, the University of Kentucky guaranteed that one school in the Final Four this year would be located in a state that was not carried by President Barack Obama in 2012. (Connecticut, Florida, and Wisconsin had previously earned Final Four slots over the weekend). Across the 76 Final Fours since 1939, an average of 3.1 schools have been located in states won by the president's ticket during the previous election cycle. All four schools have come from states won by the president 29 times, with the most recent being the 2009 Final Four featuring Connecticut, Michigan State, North Carolina, and Villanova. On 30 occasions three Final Four schools have been located in states won by the president, with two schools 11 times and only one school six times (the most recent being 2012 with Kansas, Kentucky, Louisville, and Ohio State). There has never been a Men's NCAA Division I Final Four in which no schools were located in states carried by the president's ticket.


Three for the Road

A new Rasmussen Poll shows Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker in a dead heat with likely 2014 Democratic nominee Mary Burke. Walker is seeking to win his third consecutive election after prevailing in 2012's recall contest. Eight of his predecessors accomplished this feat: Republicans Lucius Fairchild (in 1869), Jeremiah Rusk (1886), Robert La Follette (1904), Emanuel Philipp (1918), John Blaine (1924), Walter Kohler (1954), Warren Knowles (1968), and Tommy Thompson (1994). Three others Badger State governors lost on their third campaign: Democrat George Peck (1894), Progressive Philip La Follette (1938), and Republican Julius Heil (1942). One died in office before having the opportunity to win a third contest (GOPer Walter Goodland in 1947) while another resigned beforehand (Democrat Patrick Lucey in 1977 to become Ambassador to Mexico). Overall Wisconsin gubernatorial incumbents have won 35 of 47 general election contests, or 74.5 percent of the time.


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