Harry Reid had hoped that the “Tea Party” candidate Scott Ashjian would draw enough Republican votes away from the GOP nominee to give him a win in a three-way election. Mason-Dixon’s latest poll included not just Ashjian but also the “none of the above” category offered Nevada voters and the other candidates expected to make the general election ballot. Unfortunately for Reid, none of that helps to keep him from reaping the results of the radical agenda he has pursued for the last four years (via JWF):
U.S. Sen. Harry Reid must pick up far more support from crossover Republicans and independents to win re-election, according to a new poll that shows him losing to the GOP front-runner in a full-ballot election with eight contenders and a “none of these candidates” option.
The survey of Nevada voters commissioned by the Review-Journal shows Reid getting 37 percent of the vote compared with 47 percent for Republican Sue Lowden, who would win if the election were today, while the slate of third-party and nonpartisan candidates would get slim to no backing.
The latest Mason-Dixon poll for the first time measured Reid’s and Lowden’s support in a full general election test instead of in a head-to-head or three-way matchup to see how much of the vote the record number of Senate candidates on the Nov. 2 ballot would siphon off from the Democratic incumbent and the top GOP challenger, pollster Brad Coker said.
Mason-Dixon finds no particular direction in the “siphoned” votes. Roughly the same number of normally Democratic voters wind up voting for fringe candidates as do normally Republican voters. As for Ashjian, he draws less than “none of the above” and is barely noticeable at 2%.
More problematic for Reid, only eight percent of the respondents are undecided at this point. That puts his cap at 45%, although Reid hasn’t polled that high in over a year. He has a ton of money left in the bank, around $25 million, and people expect a scorched-earth campaign that will attempt to pull Lowden or Tarkanian down to his polling levels. At this point, though, it seems pretty unrealistic to expect to pull a Republican challenger down to under 37%. Reid’s problem isn’t that the Republicans are popular, but that he’s so horribly unpopular.
Normally when an incumbent reaches this level, he has the good sense to retire with what little grace remains to him. Before the passage of ObamaCare, the White House couldn’t afford to let him do that. Now with both cap-and-trade and immigration reform unlikely to proceed, there doesn’t seem to be any reason to keep Reid in this race, other than sheer bloody-mindedness.
Update: Actually, Lowden beats Reid, but Tarkanian is tied with him, 39%-39%, according to the LVRJ. The above made it sound a bit like both Republicans were ahead, so I wanted to clarify that.