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SurveyUSA for the Louisville Courier-Journal and WHAS-TV.  3/1-3. Likely voters. MoE 4.7% for GOP primary, 4.1% for Dem primary.  (10/30-11/02 results in parenthesis):

Rand Paul (R) 42 (35)
Trey Grayson (R) 27 (32)

Dan Mongiardo (D) 45 (39)
Jack Conway (D) 27 (28)

Mongiardo came within inches of unseating Jim Bunning in 2004, but has been a bit of an asshole this campaign. Still, he has the early line on the Democratic nomination. Rand Paul should run away with the GOP nomination, in the face of a horrified GOP establishment. While Paul may be right on his views about coal ("dirty", and "one of the least favorable forms of energy"), it's not the sort of thing that gets you elected in coal-rich, and coal-dependent Kentucky.

SUSA, for whatever bizarre reason, didn't poll these four candidates head-to-head in the general, opting instead for a generic Democratic vs Republican Candidate matchup. In that contest, the Republicans came out ahead 43-43 percent, a statistical dead heat.

Kentucky is now crimson red at the federal level, and getting there at the local level as well. Yet in this supposed GOP-dominant year, in the Southern state that gave us both Jim Bunning and Mitch McConnell and elected McCain by a 16-point margin, we have a tied Senate race.

Seems like rumors of impending Democratic doom this November are greatly exaggerated.

Update: Apparently, I'm stuck in 2005, since the state isn't trending GOP anymore. Here's an overview that's a couple of years old, but still instructive. Dems have retaken the governorship, romped in all but one statewide elected office in 2007. In 2009 alone, Democrats picked up three state Senate seats in special elections. It is now 20-17 Republican. Democrats still have a dominant 65-35 edge in the Kentucky House. And of course, in 2006, John Yarmuth ousted Rep. Anne Northup in the 3rd CD.  

So yeah, Kentucky isn't trending red at the local level. We saw some of that in the early 2000s, but those GOP gains are being reversed.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:50 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Mongiardo=asshole? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    askew, patriot spear, James Allen

    What's he been up to? Conway seems like a good egg. I wonder why his support is so low? Has he been in the race for long?

    Progressive Electorate
    Adam Green (PCCC):"Obama has a loser mentality"

    by CornSyrupAwareness on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:51:39 PM PST

  •  I....can't ....believe's not Bunning (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
  •  Is this the result of (0+ / 0-)
    anti-incumbent fever? If so, it may not bode well for us.

    There has only been a Dem in the Whitehouse for 13 of the past 41 years for a reason. Divide and be conquered.

    by kitebro on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:55:25 PM PST

    •  No (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      It's the result of Jim Bunning being a senile old fool who should have never been allowed to run in 2004, let alone serve another 6-year term.

      Bunning is senile.  I don't have to be an MD to show that -- just watch him do his thing for awhile.  6 years ago he was too chickenshit to debate his opponent in the same room, and instead "phoned in" his debate performance, so that he could be coached off-screen by someone who knew what year it was and had an actual functioning short-term memory.

      Imagine how far gone he is now.  He also really fucked his party over last month by grandstanding about the unemployment extension.  He was doing the "principled" thing but the GOP does not appear to have wanted him to put their lack of principles on quite so public a stage and in the interim strand millions of Americans without even the pittance that unemployment provides.

      Bunning is a complete fuckwit moron.  The reason he managed to survive the 2004 election is that the Kentucky Democratic party is corrupt to the core of its little black heart and can't manage to put a true progressive candidate up.  Year after year we get these Good Ole Boy network assholes who are fucking useless, won't stand up for Democratic principles, get dragged down in the muck of corruption, and the state randomly switches parties from year to year to year.  

      In 2008 the KY Dems were so fucking god-damned head-crushingly stupid that the party establishment supported Bruce Lunsford (former CEO of Vencor, and suspected total fucking crook) against Mitch McConnell.  It was like they went out and hand-picked the only person in Kentucky more loathsome than McConnell.

      And before anyone tries to serve up the "any Dem is better than McConnell" nonsense, I will serve up my standard claim: I fucking worked for, and know personally, Bruce Lunsford.  I wouldn't let that scumbag pick my fucking garbage up from the curb . . .

      "You have no interest in helping me do my job and I have no interest in helping you do yours" - Rep Geoff Simpson to wingnut radio host.

      by slippytoad on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:30:10 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Money totals to 12/31/09 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    CONWAY, JOHN WILLIAM (JACK) $2,336,399 $634,398 $1,701,999 $139,230 12/31/2009

    GRAYSON, C M 'TREY' $1,694,443 $288,411 $1,406,031 $23,914 12/31/2009

    MONGIARDO, DANIEL $1,472,735 $689,970 $782,860 $254,877 12/31/2009

    PAUL, RAND $1,774,651 $469,835 $1,304,190 $0 12/31/2009

    Here we are now Entertain us I feel stupid and contagious

    by Scarce on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:55:26 PM PST

    •  Grayson getting PAC money, Rand Paul not (0+ / 0-)

      Grayson was around $250k from  a bunch of PAC's and Lobbyists, and also some Republican groups. Besides a $1000 from his old man Rand Paul seems to be eschewing any of that.

      Here we are now Entertain us I feel stupid and contagious

      by Scarce on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:58:41 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Paul supporters cheering Bunning: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Your US Senator gets a salary of $176,000, and a pension. He might not share your concern over health insurance costs and coverage.

    by Inland on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:55:39 PM PST

  •  43-43? This must be good news for John McCain! n/t (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    theran, kefauver, majcmb1, filby, blue aardvark

    Left is right, Right is wrong. True, 2 wrongs don't make a right, but 3 rights make a Left.From the right, make 2 more rights and u'll b home.

    by ruff4life on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:56:04 PM PST

  •  Kos! (3+ / 0-)

    You took my fire...But I still Beat ya to it.


    A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if no one believes it.-- Anon.

    by ekyprogressive on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:56:15 PM PST

  •  All this seven more months before election day (4+ / 0-)

    What will the numbers be after HCR is passed; and combat operations in Iraq officially end and most of the troops come home; and unemployment comes down (to under 9% I would say)...

    Overall, I think the elections are going to be mostly a wash.  


    "Sick Around the World"

    Watch it, send it along to all you know.

    by oxfdblue on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:56:33 PM PST

  •  Oh don't you worry... (0+ / 0-)
    Rethugs will bust out the "comparison to socialist Obama" ads with the grainy black & white and scary music with the churchy churchy blah blah, and Democrats will have spine and no focus and will apologize for their platform and lose.

    I'm from Alabama, I know EXACTLY how this works.

  •  But But But.....Mitch sez.....DOOOOOOOOM!!! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
  •  Rand Paul might actually be bipartisan (5+ / 0-)

    on rare occasions, he might cross party lines to vote with the Democrats. His dad crosses party lines 22% of the time, which is pretty darn high.

    In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

    by blue aardvark on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 12:57:52 PM PST

    •  Rand Paul is a bigger nut than his dad. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      But he's better at hiding it. We don't want that halfwit anywhere near DC.

      Man's capacity for justice makes democracy possible, but man's inclination to injustice makes democracy necessary. Reinhold Niebuhr

      by patriot spear on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:51:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Rand Paul may be the issue (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Interestingly, good ol' Rand may be helping us here as I imagine a lot of rational Republicans reject his tea-baggism somewhat.

  •  What surprises me is that the netroots (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    askew, ekyprogressive, James Allen

    didn't jump in to this race or Ohio early in the primaries.

    Checkout Blue Arkansas:

    by ARDem on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:03:04 PM PST

    •  2 months till primary day in (0+ / 0-)

      OH, PA, NC, and AR. Not too late to get involved!

    •  For Conway. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Mongiardo is not our kind of guy.

      But most kossacks seem to think, incorrectly, that Kentucky is a lost cause.

      "Intolerance is something which belongs to the religions we have rejected." - J.J. Rousseau

      by James Allen on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 02:08:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Why would we? (0+ / 0-)

      That Conway ad has him talking about "Obama's war on coal". Mongiardo is an ass.

      I hope one of them wins, because he'll be better than the alternative, but I'm not putting my money into either of their coffers. And if I'm not willing to put my money on a candidate, I sure as hell won't ask YOU guys to do so.

      Now I'm not "the netroots", but I assume most of my colleagues in this world have a similar outlook.

      As for Ohio, I'm actually fine with either primary option. I see no reason to engage.

      •  And That Is Why... (0+ / 0-)

        Kentucky Democrats think the Nation does not care what happens here. When the Democrats and the progressive base drop the ball on some states, the voters figure "why bother".

        The state is one with a poor population, which puts our democratic candidates at a serious disadvantage. It is one where Coal plays a large role in parts of our economic health, You won't get a candidate from here with a different stance on coal, not one that would show this kind of potential to win, at least not until more opportunities come to the area. Then there is the issue of a high degree of Religious fundamentalism. At this point in time, Blue dog may be the best we can give. Just keeping it real, as someone who was born and raised here, and who has lived in several different regions of the state.

        Yes, Mongiardo is an ass, and would be a Blue Dog. And yes, every rep of either party we send will be dancing around the issue of coal, because of its influence on state politics. I promise you could work with either Mongiardo or Conway better than you could Trey or Rand. LAST thing we need is more "tea-bagger" mentality in the Senate.

        A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if no one believes it.-- Anon.

        by ekyprogressive on Tue Mar 09, 2010 at 12:54:53 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Luck is where you find it. (0+ / 0-)

    Whether it's an NY-23 race with a Republican who throws here endorsement to the Democrat or Kentucky which might have a Republican candidate bad-mouthing coal.

    Wins in those races count as much as any other win.

    Free speech? Yeah, I've heard of that. Have you?

    by dinotrac on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:03:14 PM PST

  •  I hope Dems win (3+ / 0-)

    Republicans secret dream = the impeachment of Bo the Dog LOL

    by LaurenMonica on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:07:20 PM PST

  •  Remember, though, this **IS** Kentucky. (7+ / 0-)

    We elected Bunning - and McConnell - over and over and over. We not only like to show our asses (a Kentucky expression for mouthing off, being rude, etc.), we like to send them to Washington. A lot of people here still like Bunning. They're proud of him for "standing up for them."

    One of the best Letters to the Editor I've ever read was printed in the Lexington Herald-Leader this Sunday. It was from a man in the Bronx. It said, in its entirety:

    I appreciate that Kentucky is the horse state. I hope the next time you send a senator to replace Jim Bunning, you send the front end.

    The fundies are right! The world is ending! There's a black guy with his feet up on the Oval Office desk! Oh Noez!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    by SciMathGuy on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:15:55 PM PST

  •  Deceptive headline (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    A Pseudonym

    You can't say it's "neck and neck" based on a generic question.  Th specific candidates have to be matched up before the race can be said to be "neck and neck."

    "Trust me, after taxes, a million dollars is not a lot of money." Michael Steele.

    by Paleo on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:16:05 PM PST

  •  Excellent, a new Nelson Democrat... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    patriot spear, jct

    For our ranks.  Are conservadems really better for us?  Is it just the cloture vote that we need from these senators now, instead of voting with us 90% of the time or whatever that means when health care reform, climate change legislation, unionization, and social programs all fall in that 10%.  I just don't know anymore.

    The most dangerous... programs, from a movement conservative's point of view, are the ones that work the best and thereby legitimize the welfare state. Krugman

    by BasharH on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:21:49 PM PST

    •  A Nelson Democrat vs Rand Paul (0+ / 0-)

      I'm not sure who I'd choose.  Paul would be a thorn in the sides of GOP leadership, so that might amuse me.  And he'd probably vote with us on just as many key issues as a Nelson Dem would.

      Politics is like playing Asteroids - You go far enough to the left and you end up on the right. Or vice-versa.

      by Jonze on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:44:12 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Paul (0+ / 0-)

        would certainly have some redeeming qualities, like, you said, being a pain in the ass in the GOP's side.

        Still, Coburn already plays that role, and it's not as entertaining as it's cracked up to be.

    •  Mongiardo would be at least as bad as Nelson, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BasharH, ekyprogressive

      but Conway is an actual progressive.

      "Intolerance is something which belongs to the religions we have rejected." - J.J. Rousseau

      by James Allen on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 02:09:21 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Actually, I've Read Where Conway was the A-Hole, (0+ / 0-)

    For his "son of a bitch" comment a few months ago. But then again, that could be more media drama as well.

    I haven't read anything that has claimed Mongiardo is an a-hole.

    Grayson hasn't run any ads, neither have the two main Democratic candidates. I saw a Paul ad yesterday. Paul is getting his name recognition out there. His competitors need to pick up the pace.

    Not voting gets Republicans elected. Gloating about it on DKOS isn't helpful either.

    by kefauver on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:27:30 PM PST

  •  Kos, you are wrong about Kentucky (6+ / 0-)

    I refer to your comment that we are crimson red at the federal level and are getting there at the local level.  That is incorrect. Before Yarmouth and Chandler, we only had one democratic congressman. Now we have two, even though we lost one seat after the last census. We have a democratic governor, a democratic  attorney general, a democratic auditor, and a democratic treasurer.  Our secretary of state (Trey Grayson) is a republican, but you can see that he is getting trounced in the primary here. In addition, our state house is majority democratic, and our state senate is only separated by a couple of votes now. In 2009, we won a special election and replaced one republican. There is good reason to hope democrats may win back the state senate this year.  The majority of our 120 county judge executives are democrats.

    It is true that northern Ky near Cincinnati and western Ky are majority republican, but the rest of the state is majority democratic. There is a strong union presence in this state and their endorsements are golden. Conservative democrats certainly outnumber moderates and liberals, but we are in no way turning red locally. In my county, elected republicans are few, and Obama got trounced here. Statewide and county by county, we are still a democratic state.

    "This isn't for the ones who would gladly swallow everything their leaders would have them know". Mary Chapin Carpenter

    by malenda on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:44:22 PM PST

    •  57% of registered voters are Democrats, (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      IIRC.  48% of voters in 2008 identified as Democrats, also IIRC.

      That's in Kentucky!

      "Intolerance is something which belongs to the religions we have rejected." - J.J. Rousseau

      by James Allen on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 02:11:18 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hmm, you are right (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I'll update.

    •  I agree, Kentucky is too often ignored. (0+ / 0-)

      And these elected Republicans that do go to Washington, do so little for us. It could flip, if it got the attention many of these other congressional districts and states get. Hal Could be hurt too, opensecrets has his contributions halved, and most of that money, is not from in the state.

      We are Mostly democrats here, many are conservative on social issues for religious reasons. Coal has a large influence as well, as democrats are percieved to want to "take their coal" and thus more of what limited opportunities there are here.

      A lie is a lie even if everyone believes it. The truth is the truth even if no one believes it.-- Anon.

      by ekyprogressive on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 10:53:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Mongiardo is the next Joe Lieberman. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ditch Mitch KY

    Nothing personal, I've met the guy and he's charming enough; but he WILL be the new Joe Lieberman if elected. The progressive base abandoned him in his run against Bunning.

    I've met Jack Conway too; he was coming and speaking at DFA Field Training events in Kentucky long before Howard became Chairman.

    I truly don't believe Mongiardo can win the general.

    Man's capacity for justice makes democracy possible, but man's inclination to injustice makes democracy necessary. Reinhold Niebuhr

    by patriot spear on Mon Mar 08, 2010 at 01:48:59 PM PST

  •  DEMS passed their nadir.CAN go up IF smart.'IF?' (0+ / 0-)
  •  Christ (0+ / 0-)

    The comments on Grayson's ad posted at Politico are retarded. Yeah, Rand Paul is a real lefty!

    Paul is  a bit wacky and he would drive conservatives nuts with all his libertarian stuff. If Mongiardo doesn't win, I'll take Paul just because the teabagger revolt against him will be hilarious. These halfwits have no idea what they spout.

  •  Absolutely -- Conway is the best choice (2+ / 0-)

    Jack Conway is the best choice for Kentucky and for the US Senate.  Mongiardo will be the next Lieberman.  He is owned by Big Coal and supports MountainTop Removal.

    Conway is a good solid progressive candidate.  He has a challenge in dealing with the Kentucky Democrats, who are often willing to vote against their own interests.

    We need to elect Conway in 2010.  Help if you can.  

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