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Al Franken Wins DFL Endorsement for U.S. Senate

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Actor, writer, and satirist Al Franken won the DFL endorsement for U.S. Senate at the party's convention this weekend in Rochester. Franken defeated college professor Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer on the first ballot.

The endorsement comes as little surprise, although Franken had been put on the defensive in recent days—particularly by women's groups—for various articles and (purportedly satirical) comments he had made during the past decade and a half as a comedian.

Still, Franken has long been touted as the DFL's best bet to defeat 1-term Republican incumbent Norm Coleman, especially since Mike Ciresi dropped out of the race earlier this year. Franken has polled within 10 points or less of Coleman in each of the last 10+ public polls, including leading Coleman by three points in Rasmussen and HHH / MPR polls back in mid-February and late January respectively. Nelson-Pallmeyer was routinely trailing Coleman by close to 30 points in most public opinion polls.

The Franken vs. Coleman matchup is one of the most high profile Senate races in a year in which several Senate seats will be contested.

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Remains of the Data

Plurality-Winning Governors Elected At Century-Long High Water Mark

The rate of gubernatorial candidates elected without the support of a majority of voters is at its highest level since the 1910s.

Political Crumbs

Seeing Red

Congressman Nick Rahall's failed bid for a 20th term in West Virginia this cycle, combined with a narrow loss by Nick Casey to Alex Mooney in Shelley Moore Capito's open seat, means that West Virginia Democrats will be shut out of the state's U.S. House delegation for the first time in over 90 years. The Republican sweep by two-term incumbent David McKinley in the 1st CD, Mooney in the 2nd, and Evan Jenkins over Rahall in the 3rd marks the first time the GOP has held all seats in the chamber from West Virginia since the Election of 1920. During the 67th Congress (1921-1923) all six seats from the state were controlled by the GOP. Since the Election of 1922, Democrats have won 76 percent of all U.S. House elections in the Mountain State - capturing 172 seats compared to 54 for the GOP.


Home Field Advantage?

When the 114th Congress convenes in a few days, Maine will be represented by one home-grown U.S. Representative: Waterville-born Republican Bruce Poliquin. With the departure of Millinocket-born Mike Michaud, who launched a failed gubernatorial bid, the Pine Tree State was poised to send a House delegation to D.C. without any Maine-born members for the first time since 1821. Three-term U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (born in Minnesota) coasted to reelection as expected, however Poliquin edged Kentucky-born Emily Cain by 5.3 points to keep the streak alive. Since 1876, a total of 208 of the 222 candidates elected to the nation's lower legislative chamber from the state have been born in Maine, or 94 percent.


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