By Paul Bedard, Washington Whispers
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's effort to portray polls showing him losing reelection as flawed is receiving the expected brush off, and laughter, from Republicans closely watching the race in Nevada.
Reid's associates last week suggested that the polling done on his race has been inaccurate and flawed because it hasn't factored in the long list of opponents he expects to face on the fall ballot and the availability of "None" on the ballot. Reid's team believes that with many voters angry at Washington, "None" will score high as will third party candidates, leaving him enough support to beat the leading Republican, party boss Sue Lowden.
But Republican sources are heckling that claim and providing polling data showing that Reid still loses to Lowden, 47 percent to 37 percent, when the full ballot of eight candidates and the "None" option are offered poll recipients. They have been shopping around that Mason-Dixon poll, published in the Las Vegas Review-Journal. "There have been 30 different polls going back to late 2008 and every single one of them has Reid losing," said a Republican official closely watching the Reid race.
Another official compared the Reid race to the 2006 loss by Pennsylvania Republican Sen. Rick Santorum to Bob Casey. In April 2006, Santorum's approval rating was 44 percent, compared to Reid's current 33 percent. And he was losing to Casey by 10 percent, the same gap between Reid and Lowden. In the end, Santorum lost his seat to Casey by 18 percent.