Incumbent Democrat Mary Landrieu runs slightly behind Republican challenger Bill Cassidy in Rasmussen Reports’ first look at the 2014 U.S. Senate race in Louisiana.
A new statewide telephone survey of Likely Louisiana Voters finds Cassidy, a U.S. congressman, with 44% support to Landrieu’s 40%. Five percent (5%) like some other candidate in the race, while 11% are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
The poll was done on Tuesday and Wednesday and the sample was 500 people.
Cassidy being up 44-40 on Landrieu really isn’t all that surprising – or at least Landrieu being at 40 isn’t all that surprising. She’s had trouble getting much above 40 in all but the most obviously slanted Democrat polls over the past six months and there isn’t a lot going on that would favor improvement in those numbers. So a slide from the 42-43-44 percent she was showing in the fall to 40 now is very foreseeable.
That Cassidy would be at 44 shows he may be picking up steam.
Rasmussen didn’t detect much support for Rob Maness or Paul Hollis, and the guess here is Maness would poll better than some portion of five percent if the election was today. But that said, it’s not a great survey for Maness – and Hollis’ media blitz following his announcement for the race doesn’t appear to have been effective.
Be that as it may, it’s hard to imagine Maness’ or Hollis’ voters would be Mary voters in a runoff; you can add that five percent to Cassidy’s total (or at least four of that five percent, if you want to hedge a little). That would put Cassidy at 48 or 49 percent in a runoff without even getting to the undecided vote – and if Mary is at 40 percent after 17 years in office, what would make anyone think she could get 85-90 percent of the undecideds she would need to win?
Short answer: that’s not going to happen.
Even shorter answer: she’s cooked if these numbers are even remotely accurate. Something sizable will have to happen for her to change the dynamic.
Landrieu is going to need to find a poll which has drastically different numbers than these, and soon – because if she doesn’t, it’s possible that the national Democrat money might start going someplace else and she might find herself at parity or even disadvantage to Cassidy before it’s done.
Which leaves us with some parting advice for Cassidy: do NOT sign on to the House GOP’s immigration plan, whatever it is. Leave that hot potato in the oven. All it can do is hurt your chances to become tainted with that when if you wait a year you can be part of something that might actually be good policy when Republicans hold both houses of Congress.