According to a new poll released by SurveyUSA: Representative Michele Bachmann (R) is now leading her presumed Democratic opponent by 9% of the vote with just 4 months to go; her numbers have decreased from a December high due to two Independent candidates, and a united Democratic Party running against her.
SurveyUSA Poll of 565 Likely Voters:
Rep. Bachmann (R) - 48%.
Tarryl Clark (DFL) - 39%.
Bob Anderson (IP) - 06%.
A. Immelman (I) - 02%.
Undecided - 05%
Good numbers for the Minnesota Republican (or any Minnesota Republican, considering the politics surrounding the state). However, your casual observer would notice Rep. Bachmann's lack of majority support, and would question the strength of Third Party candidates.
Let us begin by reviewing Representative Bachmann's 2008 and 2006 election results in Minnesota's 6th congressional district, and whether or not her total support was better or worse than that of SurveyUSA's measly 48%.
2008 congressional election:
Rep. Bachmann (R) - 187,817 - 43.4%.
Tinklenberg (DFL) - 175,786 - 43.4%.
Bob Anderson (IP) - 40,643 - 10.0%.
Immelman (Write In) - 20 - 0.0%.
Write in Votes - 454 - 0.1%.
2006 congressional election:
Bachmann (R) - 151,248 - 50.1%.
Wetterling (DFL) - 127,144 - 42.1%.
Binkowski (IP) - 23,557 - 7.8%.
Write in Votes - 234 - 0.1%.
A majority of the vote in this Independent minded district is hard to achieve, especially when just a few thousand voters can tip the scales one way or another. Bachmann's 48% of the vote result from SurveyUSA is the median from her previous elections, so there's really nothing to worry about.
Also, about those Third Party candidates - one must remember that Jesse Ventura won the Governorship on a Third Party ticket, that Senator Dean Barkley won over 400,000 votes running on the Independent Party line during the 2008 US Senate election, and that House candidates running on the Independent Party line averaged 8.5% of the vote in 2008.
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