The air war tightens the California Senate race

As I’ve not been shy about saying, I have an emotional attachment to the California Senate race. I live here, I’ve always lived here, and in fact Democrat Barbara Boxer was first elected to the Senate when I was first beginning to follow politics, back when I was 14 years old.

So I knew the television ad campaigns would make or break the race for Republican Carly Fiorina, and sure enough, we’re now seeing a tightening trend in the polling.

Boxer had a good September. She ran up leads as big as nine points, and was as strong as she’s been since the year begin. But the last three polls, taken as the air war has been in effect, have all been close: SurveyUSA 46-43 Boxer, MoE 3.9. Reuters/Ipsos 49-45 Boxer, MoE 4.5. And now Rasmussen 49-46 Boxer, MoE 4.

It’s always remarkable for three polls to show such similar results, all showing three or four point leads, and nearly identical lead probabilities. It’s 66/34 race if I run my projection methodology on these polls, which means the ad war has tightened the situation from a quarter chance for Fiorina to third.

Some analysts have said that California is immune to the TEA party effect seen in other states. I don’t see how that can be objectively confirmed when the Sarah Palin-backed Fiorina has kept Boxer from reaching a single double digit lead since the Field poll ending January 17. This is a tight race, this has been a tight race, and it seems reasonable to guess that the candidate with the larger and more effective television ad campaign will pull through.

In funding her side of the air war Barbara Boxer has the benefit of two large fundraisers held on her behalf by the President. Carly Fiorina has the benefit of a successful business career giving her the personal means to spend. Both have outside groups behind them. Either one can win this. Boxer just hasn’t gotten the traction against Fiorina she’s had against other Republicans she had in 1998 and 2004.

Possibly Related Posts

Barack ObamaCaliforniaCalifornia NewsSenateTea Party

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Toilet (Shutterstock)
Table salt and poop: Testing for COVID-19 in S.F. sewage

The City’s sewers could provide an early warning of fresh outbreaks

CCSF file photo
Workforce development fund to support training programs at City College

Supervisors back plans to use $500K toward economic recovery efforts through CCSF

Lakeshore Elementary School was closed in March shortly before SFUSD closed all schools due to coronavirus concerns. The district is now working to prepare all elementary schools to reopen by mid-January.<ins> (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)</ins>
School district preparing buildings for hybrid learning

SFUSD plans to use 72 elementary schools and 12 early education sites for first phase of reopening

The installation “Alexandre Singh: A Gothic Tale” is on view at the Legion of Honor, which reopens Oct. 30 with safety protocols in place. (Courtesy Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco)
Legion of Honor reopens in time for Halloween

‘A Gothic Tale’ among exhibitions on view

Most Read