The Hill reports that a GOP-commissioned poll for the special election to replace disgraced Anthony Weiner in NY-09 shows a tie. I was able to get my hands on a copy of the poll results, and the numbers are encouraging: 42/42 split between Republican Bob Turner and Democrat David Welpern (+7 for Turner, -1 for Welpern from July results); 300 likely voters; 24/60/15 Republican/Democratic/Independent voter sample (21/35/33 liberal/moderate/conservative). That R/D/I number looks about what Siena was finding, which suggests that the sample isn’t skewed too horribly.
Usual caveats apply: it’s not an independent poll. Still, if you couple this with the Daily News’ endorsement of Republican Bob Turner over Democrat David Welpern (the Daily News is fairly reliably Democratic in its endorsements), and of course the earlier Siena poll from a few weeks ago that showed Welpern seriously under-performing, it’s not unreasonable to conclude that maybe there’s a certain amount of brand damage going on here for the Democrats.
Which should not be surprising: the aforementioned Weiner had to resign after it was revealed that he had sent pictures of his genitalia to young women who were not his wife. I’m reminded of the situation in NY-26, where incumbent Republican Chris Lee similarly had to resign after it turned out that he was advertising himself, shirtless, on Craigslist: we ended up losing that election, and while it’s considered naive by some to suggest that the loss was due to local conditions, well, I suppose that I’m naive. As I noted elsewhere earlier, in situations like this a lot of the embarrassment and shock that comes from hearing that your Representative Was Acting Badly can get readily transferred to the political party that gave him or her a podium in the first place… it can be overcome – only, sometimes it can’t.
Moe Lane (crosspost)
PS: Bob Turner for NY-09.