PA Politics - Blue and Getting Bluer UPDATED

A new Quinnipiac poll is out for Pennsylvania and the results show that Pennsylvanians haven't lost their minds:

Democratic State Treasurer Robert Casey Jr. has regained his momentum in the Pennsylvania U.S. Senate race and now leads incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. RickSantorum 51 - 39 percent among likely voters, with 4 percent for Green party candidate Carl Romanelli and 5 percent undecided, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

Republicans back Sen. Santorum 77 - 17 percent, while Democrats back Casey 85 - 8 percent and independent voters back the Democrat 56 - 31 percent. In this survey,
17 percent of likely voters who name a candidate say they still might change their mind.


"Sen. Rick Santorum's comeback momentum has been stopped dead in the water. Santorum's attack ads against Casey have failed to spark voters' support, and 50 percent of voters say the Senator does not deserve re-election," said Clay F. Richards, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.
Quinnipiac's last poll had Santorum trailing by only 6 points, 48% to 42%.

All the trends are against Santorum. Bush is strongly disliked in Pennsylvania, his approval rating is only 38%. Pennsylvanians don't like Santorum personaly either. The Senator's approval rating is even lower at 35%. In addition, Rick Santorum's family lives in Virginia.

In general, things look good for Democrats in Pennsylvania

According to a Rasmussen Reports survey the Republican candidate for Governor of Pennsylvania, Lynn Swann, is trailing significantly. Ed Rendell, the incumbent, leads Swann 56% to 36%. Swann actually polled ahead of Rendell in the begining of the year.

In south eastern PA, in the suburbs of Philly, a Temple University/Philadelphia Inquirer poll has shown that strong disapproval of President Bush is affecting House races in the area:
"The Bush effect -- strongest in the southeast region -- is acting as a drag on Republican U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum, and tugs at GOP House incumbents in suburban Philadelphia, who are locked in three of the nation's most competitive races."


The Temple/Inquirer Poll asked respondents to rate their feelings toward candidates for Senate and governor on a scale of zero to 10.

Twenty-four percent of likely voters gave Santorum a zero, far more than any other candidate. Democrats were the most hostile, but 51 percent of independents rated Santorum below 5 - and 26 percent of these voters gave him a zero.


People who said they disapproved of Bush's performance were much more likely to indicate they would vote Democratic in House races, the poll found, a sign that GOP House members are tied in part to the president. Fifty-eight percent said they disapproved of the way Bush is doing his job, while 42 percent said they approved.

Republicans hold the three House seats outside Philadelphia - the Sixth, Seventh and Eighth Districts - and the Democratic candidates are considered competitive in each race. Together, the two major parties have reserved $16.1 million worth of TV advertising time in the Philadelphia market for House candidates in the last month of the campaign.
I miss all of the good campaign ads I used to see in Pennsylvania. Here in Maryland, they just assume you'll vote Democratic so they don't bother to buy air time. Sometimes we get ads from Virginia races. The Republican ads there are utterly contemptible and I don't even get satisfaction of voting against them...

UPDATE: 10:22 am

The Washington Post reports that the Green Party, which gathered signitures with Republican money and Republican staffers, will not be on the ballot:
HARRISBURG, Pa., Sept. 25 -- A judge said Monday that he will remove the Green Party candidate for U.S. Senate from the November ballot because the party did not have enough valid signatures in its nominating petitions.

Carl Romanelli's candidacy for the Pennsylvania seat had been challenged by state Democrats. Romanelli's bid was backed by Sen. Rick Santorum (R), who hoped that Romanelli could siphon votes from his Democratic opponent, state Treasurer Robert P. Casey Jr.


Commonwealth Court Judge James R. Kelley ruled that Romanelli, a railroad industry consultant from Wilkes-Barre, was 8,931 signatures shy of the 67,070 he needed to qualify as a minor-party candidate.
In general, I'm in favor of having as many parties and as many candidates running as possible. More views, more positions and more options is always good for voters. It allows them to have more than two colors to express themselves.

This, however, wasn't what was going on here. This was an effort by one candidate to 'double up' on the ballot.

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