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Rasmussen Poll: MN U.S. Senate Race A Dead Heat

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A new Rasmussen poll of 500 likely voters conducted February 16th finds 1-term Republican incumbent Senator Norm Coleman in a dead heat with both Al Franken and Mike Ciresi in the Gopher State.

Franken leads Coleman 49 to 46 percent, within the poll's margin of error. This is the first Rasmussen poll and only the second public poll overall conducted during the battle for Minnesota's Senate seat that has measured Franken's statewide support ahead of the GOP Senator.

Coleman retains a moderately high favorability rating in the state (55 percent), while Franken reached the 50 percent favorability mark for the first time in four Rasmussen polls (39 percent in March 2007, 46 percent in September 2007, 43 percent in October 2007). Coleman led Franken by 10 points last March, by 5 points last September, and by 7 points last October, according to Rasmussen.

DFL candidate Mike Ciresi is also matching Coleman blow-for-blow, trailing by just two points, 47 to 45 percent, also within the poll's margin of error. Ciresi's main competition now, however, is Franken in the fight for the DFL nomination. This marks the highest level of support Ciresi has received in a matchup poll with Coleman in 10 public polls released since February 2007.

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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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