Where 2014 Stands In Wisconsin
How's the 2014 election shaping up here in Wisconsin? Public Policy Polling took a look, and, well...it looks like what we thought it would look like.
(Before you say "Yeah, but Public Policy Polling withheld that Colorado recall poll, their numbers are bad, etc.", remember that the withheld poll was pretty close to the correct result, and they were quite accurate in 2012. Yes, they should've released the result even if they thought the numbers were off, but at least they weren't way off with what the data indicated.)
Right now, Gov. Scott Walker is leading all likely Democratic opponents, albeit not in a landslide. He's topping two-time former opponent Tom Barrett (he's not gonna run again, and if he did, he wouldn't have a lot of Dem support) Assembly Dem leader Peter Barca 47-43. Walker tops our area State Senator Kathleen Vinehout 47-41 and, perhaps most importantly, Wisconsin School Board member Mary Burke 48-42.
Why is Burke the most-important one? She's probably going to be the Democratic nominee. She's got millions of dollars at her disposal and doesn't have anyone with the financial firepower and noticeably-larger public image to challenge her (even if Vinehout or Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson, who trails Walker 47-40 in the same poll).
Walker's close to that "magic" 50-percent mark, which is usually where an incumbent wants to be in polling. I've always thought that, even if the incumbent is a little under 50, that's OK, since not necessarily all the rest of the support will go to the challenger. However, a case could be made that most of the undecided might go the Democratic candidate's way: Gov. Walker's approval rating is at 48% -- 49% disapprove. Now, approval/disapproval doesn't exactly equate how an election will go; some how disapprove of Walker won't support the Democrat, some who do might want a change of pace in the Governor's Mansion. However, what this does show is that the 2014 election might be closer than many of us -- myself included -- had expected. If Scott Walker wants to be President, he better make sure he stays Governor, first.