The Washington Examiner has the story of the WPA Opinion Research poll of the Louisiana Senate race between Bill Cassidy and Mary Landrieu, and the widening gap between the two…
Cassidy led Landrieu 57 percent to 33 percent in the survey conducted Nov. 24-25 by WPA Opinion Research for Independent Women’s Voice. His victory would bring the number of Republican Senate seats captured in this year’s midterm elections to nine, topping off the new GOP majority at 54 seats. The poll of 500 likely voters had an error margin of 4.4 percentage points.
“Cassidy has the lead among all gender age groups and enjoys a [sizable] lead among independent voters,” WPA Opinion Research said in a memo.
“Moreover, based on current projections, even if African-Americans support Landrieu at 95% and turnout in record numbers, she will still lose on Election Day.”
And a few particulars in the race…
- Among men ages 18-54, Cassidy led Landrieu 56 percent to 31 percent.
- Among men ages 55 and up, Cassidy led Landrieu 61 percent to 28 percent.
- Among women ages 18-54, Cassidy led Landrieu 61 percent to 32 percent.
- Among women ages 55 and up, Cassidy led Landrieu 50 percent to 40 percent.
- Among independent voters, Cassidy led Landrieu 67 percent to 23 percent.
Those numbers indicate a sizable rout is in the works, and as we’ve noted they’re not pie-in-the-sky for Republicans. This is something akin to a 60-40 race.
Understand this – Mary Landrieu’s only real strength is with black voters; exit polls after the November primary showed she pulled some 94 percent of the black vote while getting slaughtered with only 18 percent of the white vote.
Also understand that traditionally, and it’s almost uncanny how the historical numbers bear this out cycle after cycle, the percentage of the vote coming from African-Americans is three points higher among early voting than it is in the final analysis. In the primary, black voters made up 32 percent of the early votes and just 29 percent of the total vote.
Well, black voters were 28 percent of the early votes in advance of Saturday’s runoff.
That would indicate we’re looking at an electorate which is 25 percent black overall.
If the breakdown of Landrieu’s performance doesn’t change between the primary and the runoff, and there isn’t anything that has happened in the last five weeks that would fundamentally change it, then 94 percent of the black vote would give Landrieu 23.5 percent of the vote. And 18 percent of the 73 percent of the electorate constituting white voters would give her another 13.14 percent.
That’s 38.9 percent. With only two percent of the vote left for other ethnic and racial groups. Even if she got 70 percent of those voters, she’s at 40.3 percent. And the election is a 60-40 whitewash.
Will it be that bad? It might even be worse. When it’s this obvious your candidate won’t win it becomes a lot harder to get your vote out, especially when Landrieu had to lay off most of her field staff after the primary for lack of money.
So a 24-point shellacking like the WPA poll indicates is entirely possible. There’s a reason why Larry Sabato just reclassified the seat from “Likely Republican” to “Safe Republican.”
None of that has changed. The outside Democratic groups have stayed out, and the early voting numbers from Louisiana suggest that the electorate for the runoff will be smaller and more Republican than the one that showed up on Election Day.
It’s rare for us to completely write off an incumbent. In fact, we only did so in one race this cycle, when wemoved Gov. Tom Corbett’s (R) reelection bid in Pennsylvania to Safe Democratic a month before the election. Sure enough, Corbett lost by nearly 10 points.
Landrieu is basically in the same boat, and it would be an absolute shock if she won. So we’re moving the Louisiana Senate runoff from Likely Republican to Safe Republican.