As Jim Riley at Virginia Virtucon pointed out, "The notoriously Dem-skewing Quinnipiac poll (on average, overstating support for Dem candidates by a minimum 3-5% points in nearly every poll for the past two decades they’ve been polling) is out with their latest survey and it isn’t good news for Democrats. Not at all."
George Allen (R), former governor and U.S. Senator, and Tim Kaine (D), former governor and Democratic National Committee chairman, have polled in a tie for the past year.
This poll, however, may spell good news for Republicans if we take into consideration Quinnipiac's past polling that Riley says usually overstates Dem numbers by 3-5 percent. So take away the minimum -- 3 percentage points -- from Kaine and the numbers come out 46-41. Take away the maximum 5 percentage point and the results are even more startling -- 46-39.
If that's true, could it be the beginning of an Allen pull-away? Of course, other polls sympathetic to Democrats will come in and try to shore up both Obama and Kaine but Republicans are counting on this being the year that Virginia returns to the red column.
Speaking of Obama, the Quinnipiac poll has him tied with Romney, 44-44%. This is important because Quinnipiac had him leading 50-42% in March, and 47-42% in June. As his numbers sink, so should Kaine's since he continues to tie himself to the unpopular president and take credit for rubber stamping ObamaCare and other big-government programs that have proven unpopular with a large segment of the population.
That's why it seems quite a stretch to believe Quinnipiac's interpretation of the U.S. Senate race:
Obama is not a factor in how they will vote for Senator, 61 percent of Virginia voters say, while 15 percent say their Senate choice is a vote for the president and 19 percent say they are voting against the president.I laughed at Bearing Drift colleague Norm Leahy's reaction to that curious bit of reading of the tea leaves ... and agreed with him:
Okay, so those Obama/Allen and Romney/Kaine voters remain as elusive as Bigfoot. However, I still contend that it’s a safe bet both Allen’s and Kaine’s fortunes are tied the top of the ticket.With four months left in this race, there will be plenty more polls about this race but the only poll that will matter will be Election Day itself.