Polls today show the 2010 electorate could be more Republican than it was in 1994, when the GOP took control of Congress. Both parties are working to persuade voters hanging in the balance in the final week of the election, but a survey shows that this year there are fewer swing voters than in past midterms. In these last days, Senate races in Colorado and Illinois remain virtually deadlocked. Other polls show gains for Republican Senate insurgents Sharron Angle in Nevada, Pat Toomey in Pennsylvania, and Marco Rubio, who opened up a seven point lead over independent Florida Gov. Charlie Crist. And while Senate incumbents like Michael Bennet and Majority Leader Harry Reid struggle to hang onto their seats, a majority of likely voters say they'd rather fire Congress and completely start anew. Here is today's poll roundup:
A Rasmussen poll released today shows 65 percent of likely voters say they would like to "get rid of the entire Congress" and start over. Voters' views of both parties were pretty even, 53 percent found the Democratic Party unfavorable and 54 percent had a negative view of the GOP.
A Gallup poll shows there are fewer swing voters in the 2010 election than in previous midterms. This year, 19 percent of likely voters say they either could change their minds or had no preferred candidate. In 2006, 27 percent were identified as "swing voters" and 37 percent were in 2002. Among those voters who have already made up their minds, 86 percent say they will choose a Republican candidate while 82 percent say they will choose a Democrat. The majority of swing voters are independents, while 13 percent identify as Democrats and 12 percent are Republicans.
A separate Gallup survey estimates that 55 percent of the 2010 electorate will be Republicans compared to 40 percent who will likely identify as Democrats. The study shows a more Republican electorate than in the past four midterm elections. In 1994, for example, the poll identified 49 percent of the electorate as Republican and 44 percent as Democrats. In 2006, Gallup showed the electorate as more Democratic than Republican.
Colorado Senate Race
Two polls show Democrat Bennet and Republican Ken Buck in a statistical dead heat. According to a Rasmussen poll of likely voters, Buck edges Bennet 47 percent to 43 percent, with a 4 percent margin of error. The survey also indicates that 50 percent think Buck's views are "extreme" and 54 percent think Bennet's views are "mainstream." A CNN/Time poll shows Buck leading Bennet 47 percent to 46 percent, with a 3.5 percent margin of error.
Florida Senate Race
Republican Rubio leads independent Crist 42 percent to 35 percent among likely voters, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Democrat Kendrick Meek received 15 percent. Among Democrats, 51 percent support Crist while 36 percent back Meek. Crist and Rubio are both pulling independents, 43 percent say they would vote for Crist and 38 percent support Rubio.
Republican Rep. Mark Kirk and Democratic State Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias are in a virtual dead heat in the fight for Obama's old Senate seat, according to Rasmussen. Kirk holds a 46 percent to 42 percent edge over Giannoulias, with a 4 percent margin of error. The poll also indicated 54 percent of voters want to repeal the healthcare reform law. Obama's approval rating in the state is 51 percent, with 48 percent disapproving of the job he is doing as president.
Republican Sharron Angle narrowly leads Democrat Reid 49 percent to 45 percent among likely voters, according to a CNN/Time poll with a 3.5 percent margin of error. However, when voters were asked to choose only between Reid and Angle (excluding the Tea Party Candidate Scott Ashjian) 51 percent supported Angle while 45 percent backed Reid. Obama's disapproval rating among the state's likely voters is 59 percent.
Republican Toomey holds an eight point lead over Democratic Rep. Joe Sestak, according to a Muhlenberg College/Morning Call poll released today. Among likely voters, 48 percent support Toomey while 40 percent back Sestak. The same poll yesterday showed the pair in a virtual tie. Obama's approval rating in the state is 41 percent.