You’re probably sourly amused at all the signalling done in these paragraphs:
A new Minnesota poll, commissioned by a partisan group, finds that Democratic U.S. Sen. Al Franken is “potentially vulnerable” as he mounts his bid for re-election.
It found that Franken has a 3 percentage lead over Republican Julianne Ortman and a 6 percentage point lead over Republican Mike McFadden.
The poll was conducted by Magellan Strategies for American Encore, a group connected to the Koch Brothers that is already running television ads bashing Franken. It included 1,081 likely Minnesota voters in late March.
…because you probably also suspect that the Star Tribune would use considerably more neutral language if it the poll had been commissioned by a Democratic-leaning group funded by the Steyer brothers. but that’s all right: at least they felt obligated to report that Al Franken can’t get above 44% against two named opponents. Admittedly, they didn’t have much choice.
Does this mean that Franken is doomed? Of course not. Does it mean that the DSCC may need to think about kicking him more resources soon? …Mayyyybe? The question for the DSCC is, how much do they feel like gambling? – Because if the Democrats end up at the point where they lose Minnesota, then I don’t see the Democrats even being able to hope to retake the Senate before 2018*.
*The 2016 Presidential election puts out a distortion field that makes any strong prognostications past that point meaningless. Particularly in the Senate, given that the question of who holds power there is much more reliant on individual personalities than it would be in the House: the 2016 election will undoubtedly cause a couple of vacancies there, as Senators take on Cabinet positions. Or the Vice Presidency.