Special election polls: Djou up in HI, Burns in dead heat in PA

posted at 8:48 am on May 3, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

While most Congressional districts prepare for the midterms coming in six months, two districts have special elections this month to fill open seats.  Both have traditionally been held by Democrats, but the Republicans in both have surprisingly good polling results.  Charles Djou has the benefit of running against two Democrats, who have split the vote and vaulted him into the lead:

Honolulu City Councilman Charles Djou has the advantage in the special election for Congress, a new Hawai’i Poll has found, giving Republicans the best opportunity in two decades to claim the urban Honolulu district.

Djou leads with 36 percent, former congressman Ed Case is chasing at 28 percent, and state Senate President Colleen Hanabusa is trailing with 22 percent. Thirteen percent were undecided.

The poll, taken for The Advertiser and Hawai’i News Now, confirms fears among Democrats that Case and Hanabusa could split the Democratic vote in the winner-take-all election and help Djou score a rare Republican upset.

This is an unusual special election in that Hawaii will conduct it entirely by mail. Voters have to fill out ballots and send them back no later than May 22nd. That makes polling a real challenge, as it becomes difficult to determine the likelihood of voters to cast an effective ballot in the race. The Advertiser’s poll of likely voters is self-determined (and a bit on the small side for a reliable sample), but it does break out as one would imagine in a three-way race.

As Hotline reports, that may also be due to the two Democrats attacking each other as well as Djou:

But unfortunately for Dems, Djou isn’t the only target for some on their side. Hanabusa began airing ads this weekend attacking Case for his votes for the Bush tax cuts and against prescription drug coverage. The ad didn’t mention Djou once.

Earlier this month, the DCCC was reported to have interest in siding with Case, but so far that has not played out publicly. Those rumors emboldened Hanabusa’s camp, and although she still trails the pack, she shows no signs of going away. That will make any comeback either she or Case very difficult.

This district went for Barack Obama by 70% in 2008. Even if one combined the polls for Case and Hanabusa, the Democrat brand seems to have suffered a significant decline in Obama’s home district.

Djou produced a video hailing the results of the poll but warning his voters not to take victory for granted:

Interestingly, the NRCC has decided not to put money in this heavily Democratic district for fear of backlash from voters. They have no such reticence in Pennsylvania’s 12th CD, which is split more evenly between the two parties. Tim Burns and Mark Critz will find out on May 18th which one will replace the late John Murtha in Congress, and a new DCCC internal poll has them in a dead heat:

A Democratic poll taken last week in Pennsylvania’s 12th Congressional District showed the race for the late Rep. John Murtha’s seat a total toss-up between Democrat Mark Critz and Republican Tim Burns. The survey, taken for the DCCC’s independent expenditure arm by pollster Anzalone Liszt, showed Critz taking 43 percent of the vote to Burns’s 41 percent. The poll was in the field from April 27-29 with a sample size of 406.

Murtha served over 30 years in Congress from this district and won his last race by a significant margin. Although the registration split is near even, it’s a tough district for Republicans. Again, in a special election, the question will be mainly one of turnout and organization. The DCCC poll may or may not have sampled likely voters, which will be almost as hard to identify in PA-12 as they will be for Hawaii’s mail-only election.

Two wins in May, in traditionally Democratic districts, would send a big message about momentum in the midterms. The GOP would probably be thrilled to get just one of these two seats.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

How many times did we hear Murtha was vulnerable and then he wins by 15%? Never discount the stupidity of voters in that district.

angryed on May 3, 2010 at 8:54 AM

Does Djou drive a pickup truck?

itsnotaboutme on May 3, 2010 at 8:54 AM

Two wins in May, in traditionally Democratic districts, would send a big message about momentum in the midterms. The GOP would probably be thrilled to get just one of these two seats.

Let’s hope they get both. If PA-12 goes for the Dem, then I feel no sympathy for the residents of that district.

Doughboy on May 3, 2010 at 8:55 AM

Hawaii is getting the poi kicked out of it by the stupid schemes of the ‘rats, if they want to continue their suffering then by all means, elect another leftist idiot.

Bishop on May 3, 2010 at 8:59 AM

Never discount the stupidity of voters in that district.

angryed on May 3, 2010 at 8:54 AM

They weren’t stupid. They were pretty smart as Murtha brought back tons of Federal $$ to his district, and they really did not care too much beyond that. A junior representative will not have anywhere the amount of clout that Murtha did, so they may actually suprise us with their vote this time.

Johnnyreb on May 3, 2010 at 8:59 AM

angryed on May 3, 2010 at 8:54 AM

amen, i fear a specter redux as well…

cmsinaz on May 3, 2010 at 9:01 AM

Hawaii is getting the poi kicked out of it….

Bishop on May 3, 2010 at 8:59 AM

lolol excellent

cmsinaz on May 3, 2010 at 9:02 AM

Didn’t realize there were any Djous in Hawaii.

TXUS on May 3, 2010 at 9:02 AM

itsnotaboutme on May 3, 2010 at 8:54 AM

more likely a pretty cool surfboard

cmsinaz on May 3, 2010 at 9:02 AM

They weren’t stupid. They were pretty smart as Murtha brought back tons of Federal $$ to his district, and they really did not care too much beyond that. A junior representative will not have anywhere the amount of clout that Murtha did, so they may actually suprise us with their vote this time.

Johnnyreb on May 3, 2010 at 8:59 AM

I’ve never understood this mentality. Aside from how sleazy it sounds, when you vote for a politician based on the amount of pork he or she brings back home, all you’re doing is ensuring that said politician’s vote can be bought by the highest bidder. It’s not like this is free money. All that pork comes with strings attached.

Doughboy on May 3, 2010 at 9:05 AM

BTW, anyone here from Louisville? I rode down for the Derby last weekend and that city is a dump, talk about the need for reconstruction dollars. Whoa.

Bishop on May 3, 2010 at 9:07 AM

They weren’t stupid. They were pretty smart as Murtha brought back tons of Federal $$ to his district, and they really did not care too much beyond that. A junior representative will not have anywhere the amount of clout that Murtha did, so they may actually suprise us with their vote this time.

Johnnyreb on May 3, 2010 at 8:59 AM

Maybe.

But I don’t think the average voters thinks strategically when voting. I think it’s simply they are life long Democrats who will vote for a Democrat whther it’s Murtha or not.

angryed on May 3, 2010 at 9:07 AM

Does Djou drive a pickup truck?

itsnotaboutme on May 3, 2010 at 8:54 AM

A kayak might be better, n’est pas?

BuckeyeSam on May 3, 2010 at 9:10 AM

How many times did we hear Murtha was vulnerable and then he wins by 15%? Never discount the stupidity of voters in that district.

angryed on May 3, 2010 at 8:54 AM

That’s because the majority of voters in that district received some pork directly from Murtha. With him out of the picture, it just might be a toss-up. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Kafir on May 3, 2010 at 9:12 AM

Elizabetty has a fevah and the only perscription is more HOT YOUNG CONSERVATIVES running for office!!

Elizabetty on May 3, 2010 at 9:13 AM

And the race here in Wilmington, NC will be a hot one…this congressional race (7th district) has been held by democrats for 140 years, 140 years, read it again. And I think McIntyre (14 year incumbent), the dem incumbent, will be beaten.
Especially if Illario Pantano is the Republican contestant.
He is one of the men who Murtha called a murderer, for killing terrorists.
Now he has a chance to take out one of the most partisan districts in the nation.
Here

right2bright on May 3, 2010 at 9:15 AM

and the times they are a changing.

katy the mean old lady on May 3, 2010 at 9:26 AM

The public polling has Burns ahead.

Jon0815 on May 3, 2010 at 9:36 AM

“How many times did we hear Murtha was vulnerable and then he wins by 15%? Never discount the stupidity of voters in that district”.

Don’t underestimate the voting fraud in that district, either.
For the amount of time I have spent in and around Cambria and Somerset counties, I just can’t believe those areas are that ideologically “socialized government” minded (Johnstown notwithstanding).

listens2glenn on May 3, 2010 at 9:37 AM

Elizabetty has a fevah and the only perscription is more HOT YOUNG CONSERVATIVES running for office!!

Elizabetty on May 3, 2010 at 9:13 AM

Have you seen Marco Rubio? 40 years ago we’d be duelling in a parking lot. Mega hot!

katy the mean old lady on May 3, 2010 at 9:37 AM

I would not bank on winning in Pennsylvania. Any electorate who doesn’t think twice about voting for someone who had called them “racist rednecks” is just plain stupid. Yes, stupid. They’re morons.

Djou… I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

madmonkphotog on May 3, 2010 at 9:39 AM

How many times did we hear Murtha was vulnerable and then he wins by 15%? Never discount the stupidity of voters in that district.

angryed on May 3, 2010 at 8:54 AM

More true words were never spoken.

saiga on May 3, 2010 at 10:12 AM

Wait.. a MAIL IN ballot in HI? What’s to prevent Dems from stuffing a bunch of ballots with their neighbor’s names on them, all voting for their guy?

Jewels on May 3, 2010 at 10:17 AM

when you vote for a politician based on the amount of pork he or she brings back home, all you’re doing is ensuring that said politician’s vote can be bought by the highest bidder. It’s not like this is free money. All that pork comes with strings attached.

Doughboy on May 3, 2010 at 9:05 AM

I’m more concerned that government decisions are not based upon what is right for the nation, but what is good for me, at the expense of the nation (man cannot surve two masters) -the very antithesis of what our system how our system was designed to function.

This selfishness (what else) only comes at the expense of all others -and then like all selfishness(sin), it eventually destroys the perpetrators and recipients themselves.

Don L on May 3, 2010 at 10:21 AM

Hawaii’s special election is perhaps the most interesting race experienced in Hawaii’s history. Being a “One Party” control since “Statehood” has top leaders for political positions changing their actual affiliation to Demoncrate on purpose just to get elected.

The sad part, is that once elected the process of devolution begins immediately to insure the
“Plantation” mentality continues. The newly elected person who is in opposition to this Regime are besieged with offers ‘to good to pass up’ from Union bosses and other power brokers and all they have to do is what they say.

Really, how bad is it? It is so bad that there are only enough elected officals Conservatives/Republicans in both bodies of the legislation you can actually count them on both hands – not enough to lead in positions of power ‘Appropriations’, ‘Way and Means’, etc. Also, their are politicians who got elected with only half of their districts whooping one thousand voters showing up to vote, but the entire District shows up for a few free lunches or dinners. Finally, Hawaii has the lowest voter turnout of all the nation, resulting from the “Plantation Mentality”, whereby the Plantation Owner will take care of all of the populations needs and wants and do not understand that No can be a complete sentence.

Mr. Djou, represents a local boy that understands the great many problems that exist and offers solutions that do not cost money. Mr. Djou also tells people that unless they take back control of the government the status quo will continue until the entire population is taxed into obviation – currently Hawaii’s citizen are taxed at a rate that when combined with federal taxes and health care deductions over 50% of their pay is used to pay for government services that are not essential.

My sense as a Hawaiian citizen for over twenty years, is that the times are a ‘Changing’ while it will not be sufficient enough to bring parity to the political arena, it will tell those in elected positions that the population is not happy. Thus, requiring them to make better decision in the 60 days that they are actually in session.

Mahalo.

MSGTAS on May 3, 2010 at 11:03 AM

Hawaii-1, the district where our Magnificent SuperPresident was born. Go Djou!

Greek Fire on May 3, 2010 at 11:05 AM

Have you seen Marco Rubio? 40 years ago we’d be duelling in a parking lot. Mega hot!

katy the mean old lady on May 3, 2010 at 9:37 AM

SEEN??? Oh Katy, the things I do to that man in my dreams…..

Elizabetty on May 3, 2010 at 11:06 AM

Taking Murtha’s seat would be like hitting home run off Mariano Rivera: exceedingly unlikely and immensely sweet.

Bruno Strozek on May 3, 2010 at 11:18 AM

So, they actually DO wear Hawaiian shirts in Hawaii? Who’da thunk?

rivlax on May 3, 2010 at 11:24 AM

SEEN??? Oh Katy, the things I do to that man in my dreams…..

Elizabetty on May 3, 2010 at 11:06 AM

Giggle..been helping with his campaign for a while. He probably thinks I’m nuts thanks to the drool running out on my chin.

katy the mean old lady on May 3, 2010 at 11:38 AM

Wait.. a MAIL IN ballot in HI? What’s to prevent Dems from stuffing a bunch of ballots with their neighbor’s names on them, all voting for their guy?

Jewels on May 3, 2010 at 10:17 AM

Voter Fraud Charges. Suppose you submitted ballots for your neighbors who also submitted ballots for themselves. The possibility is that one might receive 2 or more ballots from the same person.

Therea is also probably a ballot control where a ballot is mailed to each registered voter in that district. Some voters will not mail theirs back. Another possibility is one person will fill in all the ballots mailed to an address. Not much one can do about this. Or you could have an hard leftist democrat postman who appropriates all the ballots on his/her route and fills them all in and mails them. This might be discovered when Aloha Guy complains that he didn’t receive his ballot.

PrettyD_Vicious on May 3, 2010 at 11:48 AM

Interestingly, the NRCC has decided not to put money in this heavily Democratic district for fear of backlash from voters.

Mitt Romney has endorsed Charles Djou and donated $2,500 to his campaign.

Mitt Romney will do what the NRCC won’t and that is to support a conservative candidate for Congress in Hawaii.

Please donate to Djou’s campaign.

Conservative Samizdat on May 3, 2010 at 12:00 PM

Pennsyltucky loves it’s Pork!!!

phillyrepub on May 3, 2010 at 12:01 PM

I heard Charles on Dennis Prager’s Radio Show last week. Dennis asked his listeners to send him money. I listen to Dennis on KHNR Honolulu, HI at noon. Since Rush & Dennis come on at same time and HI is an hour behind me in time zone, streaming KHNR gives me an opportunity to listen to both of them. Anyway, I have been hearing Charles’ radio campaign spots. I think he sounds great. I wish him luck!

Sultry Beauty on May 3, 2010 at 12:24 PM

PrettyD_Vicious on May 3, 2010 at 11:48 AM

From what Charles said this is standard in HI for a Special Election. They have two weeks to turn in their ballot and they are allowed to campaign during this time up until the close of the election.

I live in Riverside County that back in the 2000 election used the first touch screen ballot system. It has been expanded where two weeks prior to the election people can go to a standard location, usually your local mall, and vote on the electronic system. The concept was to make sure that more people would be encouraged to vote. Some people have the intention to vote but on the day something comes up and they don’t do it. And then they’re too lazy to turn in the absentee ballot. So, here are a group of people shopping, see the set up, and, they hope, think “Hey, I better go vote before I forget.”

Sultry Beauty on May 3, 2010 at 12:31 PM

If those party hacks had not ignored Bill Russell for the PA12 race, I think Bill would have been further ahead in the polls. Instead the party hacks picked someone from OUTSIDE the district to run, and someone who supposedly is worth 9 figures and is contributing also to the compaigns of the party hacks.

Therefore, it is imperative that the PA 12 Conservatives vote for Bill Russell in the primary election that same day. Go let Burns, the party hack, go to DC for the interim, but send Bill Russell there in the next Congress.

karenhasfreedom on May 3, 2010 at 1:27 PM

I have been following Charles Djou’s campaign in Hawaii for a while via his website http://www.Djou.com and I have been very impressed.

In addition to being right on the issues, Charles Djou is running a great campaign that pays attention to the details that can make or break a campaign.

Take a look at the video he created on exactly how to vote in Hawaii’s vote by mail election:
http://www.djou.com/video/voting-instructions

This is the type of information ALL conservative candidates should be providing for their voters.

Also, the ballots in Hawaii need to be RECEIVED by May 22, so if you know anybody in that district make sure they vote as soon as possible.

Scott Brown proved that Republican victories are possible even in the most liberal locations.

Let’s prove it again with a victory for Charles Djou!

wren on May 3, 2010 at 2:02 PM

PA12 isn’t going to mean much because I believe that district is slated to be dissolved after the census data is in.

When a state must give up a seat, it is generally the most junior seat that goes.

crosspatch on May 3, 2010 at 2:33 PM

PA12 isn’t going to mean much because I believe that district is slated to be dissolved after the census data is in.
crosspatch on May 3, 2010 at 2:33 PM

The PA12 election will be hugely important if a Republican wins because it will show the building momentum for a Republican landslide in November.

Winning these special elections is the best way to slow down Nancy Pelosi’s radical agenda.

wren on May 3, 2010 at 2:45 PM

1 or 2 or 10 seats isn’t going to slow down anything. November is what counts.

crosspatch on May 3, 2010 at 2:50 PM

Within 3 months Djou and Burns will be hit with the RINO label here. Who wants to take that bet? :)

ThePrez on May 3, 2010 at 2:55 PM

Pennsyltucky loves it’s Pork!!!

People in Kentucksylvania might not like some of the implications of your remark, Phillyrepub. Food for thought.

Knott Buyinit on May 3, 2010 at 3:02 PM

1 or 2 or 10 seats isn’t going to slow down anything. November is what counts.

crosspatch on May 3, 2010 at 2:50 PM

It is not the number of seats that matters. It is the MOMENTUM that winning these Special Elections will build that is important.

Remember how excited conservatives were when Scott Brown won the election in Massachusetts? We need to build that level of energy and motivation among our volunteers and supporters to help our candidates win in November.

And don’t underestimate how closely Democrat Congresspeople are watching these special elections.

If Democrats see Republicans win in Districts that have previously been considered Democrat strongholds, they will know that no seat is safe in 2010 and it will become a lot harder for Nancy Pelosi to get their votes on controversial bills.

wren on May 3, 2010 at 3:30 PM

Giggle..been helping with his campaign for a while. He probably thinks I’m nuts thanks to the drool running out on my chin.

katy the mean old lady on May 3, 2010 at 11:38 AM

I bet he gets that a lot. I couldn’t work for him campaign, he wouldn’t be safe near me!!

Elizabetty on May 3, 2010 at 7:01 PM

If those party hacks had not ignored Bill Russell for the PA12 race, I think Bill would have been further ahead in the polls. Instead the party hacks picked someone from OUTSIDE the district to run, and someone who supposedly is worth 9 figures and is contributing also to the compaigns of the party hacks.

OK…I think they didn’t pick Bill Russell this time is because he really didn’t utilize his funds in the right way…Bill had little money to run after paying for direct mailings. Tim Burns does have his own money to run, which helps out the GOPers around the state. They don’t have to spend as much there and can save it for Nov.

You say Burns is from outside the District…He lives in Eighty Four…last time I checked, that was in the district. Russell didn’t grow up here, just moved here to challenge Murtha. I voted for Russell last election, but it seems that Burns has more to offer…If Russell has more ideas, we haven’t seen it. And that would be his fault for not getting his ideas more exposure to the public.

Therefore, it is imperative that the PA 12 Conservatives vote for Bill Russell in the primary election that same day. Go let Burns, the party hack, go to DC for the interim, but send Bill Russell there in the next Congress.

karenhasfreedom on May 3, 2010 at 1:27 PM

This just seems like sour grapes because the party didn’t choose Russell for the Special Election. Russell kind of did this to himself. If he would have had better staff and made better decisions with the funds he has raised, he probably been selected by the party for the Special Election.

I say look at the two candidates and decide for yourself…

http://www.timburnsforcongress.com

http://www.russellbrigade.com

pennjazz on May 3, 2010 at 11:14 PM

Pennsyltucky loves it’s Pork!!!

phillyrepub on May 3, 2010 at 12:01 PM

Yeah, the people that liked Murtha liked the fact that money was coming back to the district instead of going to places that always got too much…like Philly. I didn’t like Murtha, but realize why people voted for him.

pennjazz on May 3, 2010 at 11:19 PM

PA12 isn’t going to mean much because I believe that district is slated to be dissolved after the census data is in.

When a state must give up a seat, it is generally the most junior seat that goes.

crosspatch on May 3, 2010 at 2:33 PM

Not always…PA 12 was created from 2 districts at the last redistricting…Murtha and Mascara, two incumbent Dems had to run for the one seat since their 2 districts were being combined. This eliminated 1 democrat seat.

pennjazz on May 3, 2010 at 11:24 PM