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Political Roundup — June 28, 2024


Wisconsin: Marquette Poll Yields Surprising Responses 

A new Marquette University Law School poll of the Wisconsin electorate has yielded some seemingly inconsistent answers from respondents, particularly relating to former President Trump's "hush money" conviction in New York.

On the presidential ballot test question, the registered voter sample broke 44-44% between President Biden and former President Trump, and 50-50% when undecideds were pushed to answer. Among those respondents considering themselves definite or likely voters, Biden held a 51-49% edge when respondents were pushed. When the independent and minor party candidates were added to the questionnaire, Trump came out ahead, 43-40%.


Perhaps most noteworthy, when asked whether Trump was guilty of the "hush money" charges levied against him in New York, independents responded in the affirmative by a margin of 54-28%. Yet, on the ballot test question, independents still broke for Trump 57-41%. This means that many of the Wisconsin respondents who believe Trump was guilty are still willing to vote for him in the general election.


Montana: Sheehy Leading in Latest Survey

Largely confirming the results of a previously-published Emerson College poll, a new survey by Fabrizio Lee & Associates shows former President Trump with a huge Montana lead; and GOP US Senate candidate Tim Sheehy far behind the top of the ticket, but still within a position to win. 

The new poll finds Mr. Sheehy pulling ahead of Sen. Jon Tester (D), with a 46-43-4% lead.  The ballot test included Libertarian candidate Sid Daoud, but not Green Party nominee Robert Barb. Both are expected to be on the general election ballot.  

In a straight Tester-Sheehy head-to-head result, the two men are tied at 48% apiece, but 41 of Sheehy's 48% say they are definitely voting for him, versus only 35% of Sen. Tester's contingent who say likewise.  

Former President Trump leads President Biden by a whopping 54-36%. The generic question, i.e., "Would you be most likely to vote for the Republican candidate or Democratic candidate for Senator?" breaks 52-40% in favor of the Republican.

Wisconsin: Sen. Baldwin Maintains Lead in Regular Poll 

The Marquette Law School poll referenced above finds Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D) leading Republican Eric Hovde 45-38%, with 17% of respondents indicating they are undecided. However, then the undecideds were prompted to make a choice, Baldwin's lead over Hovde narrowed to 52-47%


VA-5: Rep. Good's Recount Timetable 

Local news reports are confirming that Virginia US Rep. Bob Good (R-Lynchburg) will request and pay for a recount of the June 18 primary results that find him trailing state Sen. John McGuire (R-Manakin Sabot) by 374 votes, according to the Virginia Board of Elections official count. The certification deadline is July 2. After certification, a candidate can request a recount.  

Though a 374 vote difference is not large — translating to six-tenths of a percentage point from a turnout of 62,792 votes — it is unlikely that a recount will change the final totals by such an amount. Representative Good is also challenging the handling of ballots in the city of Lynchburg, a locality he won. Lynchburg election officials say Good's challenge would affect fewer than 10 ballots, even if his argument is proven correct.

WI-3: Looming Close Race 

The GQR survey research firm was in the field from June 10-16, and finds western Wisconsin Rep. Derrick Van Orden (R-Prairie du Chien) holding only a minimal lead over small business owner Rebecca Cooke (D). The ballot test favors the freshman Congressman by just a 50-46% margin. Mr. Van Orden's favorability index, however, is barely positive, at 41:40%.  

Anchored in the city of La Crosse, Wisconsin's 3rd District through all or part of 19 western counties, the FiveThirtyEight data organization rates the seat as R+9, but statisticians for Dave's Redistricting App calculate a virtually-even partisan lean. Former President Trump carried the seat in 2020 with a 51.5-46.8% victory margin, despite losing the statewide count. Prior to Mr. Van Orden converting this seat to the Republican column in 2022, Democrat Ron Kind represented the district for 26 years.


Jim Ellis is a 35-year veteran of politics at the state and national levels. He has served ss executive director for two national political action committees, as well as a consultant to the three national Republican Party organizations in DC, the National Federation of Independent Business, and various national conservative groups.

Born and raised in Sacramento, California, he earned a B. A. in Political Science from the University of California at Davis in 1979. Jim raised his daughter, Jacqueline, alone after his wife died following a tragic car accident. He helped establish the Joan Ellis Victims Assistance Network in Rochester, NH. Jim also is a member of the Northern Virginia Football Officials Association, which officiates high school games throughout the region.

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