Among the major talking points from President Barack Obama and Democrats that are often repeated in the media has been that the public agrees with his calls for higher taxes on the wealthy as part of any “fiscal cliff” deal.
In their story on a new poll conducted with George Washington University, Politico ran with the headline, “Battleground Poll: Hike taxes on rich.” The poll showed that “60 percent of respondents support raising taxes on households that earn more than $250,000 a year and 64 percent want to raise taxes on large corporations.” Again, not surprising. It fits the narrative that we’ve constantly heard, even though it’s a myth.
But buried deep inside the story — seven paragraphs down — was this gem:
According to the poll — taken from from Dec. 2 to Dec. 6 — 69 percent of respondents oppose raising taxes on small businesses that earn more than $250,000 — a group that the GOP is trying to protect with its push to extend the Bush tax cuts.
Republicans have argued thoughout the course of the “fiscal cliff” negoitiations that they want to protect small businesses — entities employing less than 500 people — in a “fiscal cliff” deal. They’re getting hammered by the White House and Democrats for not wanting to raise taxes, but here is their affirmation on the issue as nearly 70% of respondents agree with the GOP’s position. The headline should have been “Battleground Poll: Don’t raise taxes on small businesses” or something along similar lines.
There is no question that South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has an important decision to make in who will succeed and finish the remainder of Jim DeMint’s term. However, there is an aspect to the appointment that hasn’t gotten much, if any, attention.
In 2010, Haley rode the Tea Party wave all the way to Columbia. Early on in her campaign, Erick Erickson wrote that Haley “gets checks in all the major boxes: life, tax cutting, government cutting, honesty, and uncompromising on the need to reform.”
“She is not afraid, even as an elected official, to criticize her own party for losing its way. That’s the type of candidate the Republicans need,” he added.
Unfortunately, Haley’s record in office has been disappointing. In her first year, Haley proposed the largest spending increase in state history (including federal funds). In its biannual Fiscal Policy Report Card on America’s Governors, which grades state executives on spending and taxes, the Cato Institute noted that Haley oversaw an 11% spending increase in just two fiscal years.
Sen. Taxby Shambliss Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), one of a handful of Republicans who are thought to be facing a tough primary challenge in 2014 due to their willingness to break their no-tax pledge, may want to take a look at a new survey from Public Policy Polling.
While Chambliss leads most of his potential challengers, there is a number here that would scare any incumbent hoping to get past controversy (emphasis mine):
According to a survey from the Democratic-leaning Public Policing Polling (PPP) released Tuesday, just 38 percent of Republican primary voters want Chambliss to win the GOP nomination. Chambliss is up for reelection in 2014.
The biggest challenge to Chambliss, the poll found, would be one by Cain, who has said he would not run for Chambliss’s seat. PPP found Cain leading Chambliss 50 to 36 percent in a head-to-head match-up.
The poll also found Chambliss leads other contenders regularly mentioned as possible challengers. He leads Rep. Paul Broun (R-Ga.) 57 to 14 percent in a head-to-head match-up. Against Rep. Tom Price (R-Ga.), Chambliss is also the front-runner, leading 52 to 34 percent. Lastly, Chambliss leads former Georgia Secretary of State Karen Handel 52 to 23 percent.
According to Public Policy Polling, 43% of Republicans wants someone “more conservative.” Another red-flag for Chambliss is the fact that his approval rating is below 50%.
Republicans are still reeling from this year’s election results, which secured President Barack Obama another four years in the White House. And at this point, no one really wants to talk about 2016. That hasn’t stopped at least one pollster, Public Policy Polling, from looking at the prospective field for Republicans.
Last week, Public Policy Polling, which was the most accurate pollster this year, released a survey looking at how some potential Republican presidential candidates shape up in the all important state of Iowa:
The Republican Party has no front-runner for the 2016 Iowa caucuses, with even Jeb Bush and Paul Ryan scarcely drawing double-digit support in a new Public Policy Polling survey of the contest.
The poll, which was shared exclusively with POLITICO, found former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee as the nominal leader of the pack, taking 15 percent of the vote in a nine-candidate field.
But that was only 3 points better than Ryan, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, each of whom took 12 percent. Bush had 11 percent, followed by Rick Santorum at 10 percent and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice at 9 percent.
Bringing up the rear were Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul at 5 percent and Sarah Palin at 4 percent.
Social conservatives are an important bloc in Iowa, as well as in the South. Rick Santorum carried the state earlier this year, though he was unable to gain enough traction in other primaries across the country to overtake Mitt Romney.
This race was one Republicans were counting on to take back the Senate this year. Things haven’t really worked out as planned in other races, but Rep. Denny Rehberg could knock off Sen. Jon Tester in what is going to be a very close election. According to the latest poll in the race from Mason-Dixon, Rehberg holds a 4-point lead over Tester, though inside the margin of error:
The poll showed 49 percent for Rehberg, who is Montana’s U.S. House representative, and 45 percent for Tester, the first-term incumbent. Only 1 percent said they’re voting for Libertarian Dan Cox and just 5 percent were undecided.
Mason-Dixon Polling & Research of Washington, D.C., conducted the poll early last week for Lee Newspapers, interviewing 625 registered Montana voters who said they are likely to vote in Tuesday’s election.
The poll has an error margin of plus or minus 4 percentage points.
Rehberg’s lead is only a single percentage point different than what he had six weeks ago in a Lee Newspapers poll, which showed him with a 48-45 advantage over Tester.
“Rehberg’s just kind of kept that little lead on Tester,” said Brad Coker, managing director for Mason-Dixon. “The general rule is it’s harder for an incumbent to make up ground with undecided voters. Here, you have two incumbents.”
According to new polling from the Salt Lake Tribune, Mia Love is on her way to becoming the first black Republican woman in Congress. The poll, conducted by Mason-Dixon, shows Love leading Rep. Jim Matheson (D-UT) by a 12-point margin:
Matheson trails Republican challenger Mia Love 52 percent to 40 percent in a new poll conducted for The Salt Lake Tribune, a large margin in a race where, even a few days ago, both campaigns were predicting a tight finish.
The Tribune poll, conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research, found that the coalition of Democrats, independents, moderate Republicans and women that Matheson has united in past elections is failing to coalesce this time around, with just 9 percent of Republicans crossing over to support him.
Matheson’s poll showed him getting 19 percent of GOP support.
Brad Coker, managing director at Mason-Dixon, said that Matheson may be falling victim to the popularity of Mitt Romney.
“Romney is winning [Utah] by such a big margin and Republican voters are coming out because of Romney,” Coker said. “It’s just not a good year to be a Democrat in Utah.”
Love — with the backing of national groups and fundraising help from prominent national Republicans — has also been able to keep pace with Matheson’s spending and has become a popular figure among national Republicans, Coker said.
While other polls show Iowa and Wisconsin out of Mitt Romney’s reach, new polling from Rasmussen in both states show a tightening race with just four days left to go until voters head to the polls.
A week ago, the candidates were tied at 48% apiece. The president led by two earlier in the month, while Romney posted a three-point lead in September. Prior to the latest findings, Romney’s support in Iowa has fallen in the narrow range of 46% to 48% in surveys since June, while Obama’s support has ranged from 44% to 49%.
Forty-two percent (42%) of likely Iowa voters have already voted. The president leads 56% to 39% among these voters.
In line with voters nationally, Iowa voters trust Romney more by seven points – 51% to 44% - when it comes to handling the economy but trust the candidates equally in the area of national security.
Remember when Democrats thought that Mitt Romney’s selection of Paul Ryan would be easy for them to tear down because of his reasonable proposal to reform Medicare? They’ve certainly tried to demagogue the issue — take, for example, DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz attempt during the summer on CNN when she was educated by Wolf Biltzer.
But new polling from the Kaiser Family Foundation shows that the attacks haven’t worked, as Romney has narrowed the gap with President Obama on Medicare:
Mitt Romney has pulled even with President Obama when it comes to the question of whom voters trust on Medicare, according to a new poll.
October’s Kaiser Health Tracking poll found that in one month, Romney brought Obama’s lead on Medicare issues from 16 points down to 5, a gap that was not statistically significant in the poll.
Those figures represent the leanings of likely voters. Among seniors, Kaiser found that Romney leads Obama on Medicare by 5 points (48 percent to 43).
Kaiser found that 61 percent of likely voters and 72 percent of seniors oppose converting Medicare to a premium-support system. Romney and his running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), have endorsed plans to partially privatize the program, giving future seniors a fixed dollar amount to buy coverage from traditional Medicare or on the private market.
Opposition to premium support is stable among non-seniors, though Kaiser cited other research that found opinion on the issue to be “quite malleable” and disposed to “persuasive messaging.”
Despite Obama’s nearly 5-point advantage in Pennsylvania, which a Republican hasn’t won since 1988, Mitt Romney’s campaign has purchased ad time in the state, hoping to pick its 20 electoral votes off on Tuesday:
Mitt Romney will soon run campaign advertisements on Pennsylvania television, a Republican source told CNN on Tuesday. The Romney campaign later released an energy-themed ad which specifically mentions Pennsylvania. Romney’s campaign plans to go up next week in Philadelphia on Monday and Tuesday - Election Day, the source said, adding that the buy could be expanded.
The Philadelphia suburbs are key counties and could determine who wins the state. They are home to middle-income and affluent voters who are conservative on fiscal issues but liberal on social issues, including abortion and gun control.
The ad, which can be viewed below, opens with footage from 2008 of then-candidate Obama explaining his views on coal, which is a big industry in Pennsylvania. Obama said, “If someboday wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can. It’s just that it will bankrupt them.” A narrator explains that Obama “kept that promise, and Pennsylvania coal paid the price,” as graphic flashes on the screen noting that 22 coal plants in the state will either close or be forced to convert.
The ad then turns to debate footage featuring Romney and Obama, who is looking down, as the Republican nominee explains that “people in the coal industry feel like its getting crushed by your policies”:
With six days left to go until the election, national polls continue to show a tight race between President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. Each campaign is working hard, despite a lull due to Hurricane Sandy, to reach out to voters who remain on the fence.
But which campaign has momentum in their corner? Romney’s seen a surge in polls in recent weeks, but he has some numbers on his side. According to a Gallup poll released on Monday, Romney has a 7-point advantage over Obama in early voting. Additionally, a survey released yesterday by NPR found that Republicans are more enthusiastic about voting than Democrats.
So what are Republicans relying on to win? According to the Washington Examiner, Republicans believe that Democrats are spending their resources turning out their most reliable voters, leaving election day to focus on everyone else: