Senate Republicans are cheering new polling that finds Nevadans unenthused with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
"The next time the Democrats say that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is vulnerable, I want them to explain this," says a GOP aide. Reid's favorable-to-unfavorable rating hit its lowest point in a new poll published by the Las Vegas Review Journal: 32 percent favorable vs. 51 percent unfavorable. In fact, the paper said, Reid is less popular than President Bush. Senate Democratic aides, however, dismissed the poll, which had a large group who declared themselves neutral. To rebut the GOP, they distributed part of an analysis that suggested problems with the polling and sample.
While Reid is not up for re-election until 2010, some GOP officials said that the numbers give hope that a credible Republican will consider running against Reid. They also said that the numbers will be used to cheer on sitting senators and GOP challengers facing election in 2008. The GOP is focused on the Reid numbers in part because the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee recently cited McConnell's slumping polls to suggest he was vulnerable.
More recent polls, however, have shown a rebound by the Republican.