Friday, August 28, 2020

Are National Republicans Giving Up on Gardner?

Senator Cory Gardner | Getty Images
In the online paper, the Colorado Times Recorder, reporter Sean Price puts together a story on speculation that since Donald Trump’s campaign hasn’t targeted Colorado, the national Republicans funding sources may be walking away from incumbent Senator Cory Gardner.

I doubted it, although I agreed it doesn’t appear Trump’s chances in Colorado, as of now, are very good.

Floyd Ciruli, a Colorado pollster and political analyst, does not believe Republican donors are going to back away from Gardner. He argues that Gardner is too close to leadership to forsake, but Ciruli can’t ignore the difficulties that Garner will face in his campaign.

“If you look at Arizona, the presidential race is close,” Ciruli said. “Same with Montana. The president may well carry North Carolina. It will be close in Maine. Nobody thinks Colorado is going to be close at the moment. There’s no way the Trump campaign is going to spend big in Colorado because you can’t find a poll that has Trump within ten points. And that is Cory’s problem.”

If Trump was investing in Colorado, it might help, but Gardner’s challenge is to be ahead of Trump by sufficient votes to defeat John Hickenlooper – today, polls have that number at least six points. Trump may lose by twice that amount. Finally, I argued that in late September/early October, the D.C. Republican funders of campaigns will make a decision as to where to put their final money.

Not until mid-September or early October will national Republican groups, like the NRSC, decide whether to desert Gardner, according to both Welchert and Ciruli “It’s important to note that McConnell’s PAC is pulling away,” Ciruli said. “That’s an important factor. But there is still quite a lot of other dark money in this race. Maybe on October 1, if Gardner is down 6-8 points, you’ll start to see them give up on him, but not yet.”

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Could Hickenlooper Lose?

As of mid-August, polls and political prognosticators suggest that Democratic Senate candidate, John Hickenlooper, will have to work very hard to lose to incumbent Senator Cory Gardner. But, if anxious Democratic activists are any indication, it could happen. Hickenlooper’s campaign is judged as weak and his strategy overly dependent on Donald Trump.

Polls suggest he’s at least 6 points ahead of Gardner and President Trump’s down at least ten to Joe Biden. Political science suggests the linkage between voters’ preferences for president and senate is very strong in the age of polarization.

But, the feedback from many media observers, political consultants and just activist Democrats desperate to win the senate is that Hickenlooper’s campaign is disorganized and losing ground. He appears to be trying to avoid engagement with Gardner and it’s creating an issue. He is also not interacting with local media, which wants calls answered. According to numerous activists, the campaign is depending purely on online and media advertising, but many are criticizing the ads as poorly produced and boring, which reflects the opposite of many of his previous campaigns. Hickenlooper appears remote and still without a short, clear message as to why he is running. Maybe it won’t matter – his handlers seem to think so. But, the negative feedback is loud.

Democratic Senate candidate John Hickenlooper | AP photo

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Election Central: Pre-Labor Day Update

The Democratic Convention is done and the Republicans are underway. Join us September 1st when the conventions are over to preview the race before the campaigns start in full force. The Friends of the Crossley Center for Public Opinion Research have organized a session to have a conversation as to where the campaigns stand.

We will have two highly watched races in Colorado – one for U.S. Senate, and after the upset primary, the 3rd Congressional District. But, of course, most importantly and powerfully influential on local races will be the contest between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

The following topics will be discussed on September 1st at 11:00 am MT:
  1. Where’s the election today? Who’s ahead, who’s behind? U.S. Presidential, Colorado Senate, Third Congressional?
  2. Are the polls accurate? What about the Silent Majority (secret Trump vote)?
  3. Will the race tighten? What are the underdog’s strategies to win and will they work?
  4. Who’s going to vote? How many? Problems?
  5. What will election night look like? When will we call the race?

Former VP Joe Biden (L) and his wife Jill Biden (2nd left) and Sen.
Kamala Harris (2nd from right) and her husband Doug Emhoff (R) wave
to supporters after Biden spoke during the fourth day of the Democratic
Convention, Aug. 20, 2020 | Andrew Harnik/AP

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Water Congress Welcomes Boebert and Mitsch Bush in First Conversation on Water

On August 27, Lauren Boebert and Diane Mitsch Bush will present their views on water, a critical Western Slope resource, on Zoom at noon.

Moderating the session will be Colorado Politics writer and editor, Joey Bunch. He will be joined by Republican consultant and commentator, Dick Wadhams, and lobbyist Zoey DeWolf giving a Democratic perspective.

Join the conversation, which will be the first side-by-side conversation in the campaign.

Republican 3rd Congressional District nominee Lauren Boebert
speaks at a monthly luncheon for the Mesa County Republican Party,
 Aug. 21, 2020 | Jason Burger/KKCO/KJCT
Democratic 3rd Congressional District nominee Diane Mitsch Bush
speaks at a campaign even in Steamboat Springs, June 2020 | Tom Ross

Friday, August 21, 2020

Election Central: Pre-Labor Day Update

With one convention completed and the second about to begin, the election is poised to start in full force. Before the onslaught, the Friends of the Crossley Center for Public Opinion Research have been invited to a session to present a status report and have a conversation as to where the campaigns stand.

We will have two highly watched races in Colorado – one for U.S. Senate, and after the upset primary, the 3rd Congressional District. But, of course, most importantly and powerfully influential on local races will be the contest between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.

The following outlines topics we will discuss on September 1st at 11:00 am MT:
  1. Where’s the election today? Who’s ahead, who’s behind? U.S. Presidential, Colorado Senate, Third Congressional?
  2. Are the polls accurate? What about the Silent Majority (secret Trump vote)?
  3. Will the race tighten? What are the underdog’s strategies to win and will they work?
  4. Who’s going to vote? How many? Problems?
  5. What will election night look like? When will we call the race?


Crystal Ball
Electoral College Rating
July 14, 2020

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Battlegrounds: Millions are Being Spent in Battleground Advertising. Are the Numbers Starting to Move?

In the last month, there has been little movement in the battleground numbers, even with millions in advertising expenditures from the Trump campaign. The state polling numbers in 2020 are more reliable with multiple polls conducted by national media outlets.

The President improved his position by a point in Arizona and Michigan, two points in Florida, and his biggest gain of four in North Carolina, going to three points for Biden to one for Trump. He lost a point in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. I’ve added Ohio to the watch list. Trump won it by 8 points in 2016 and is now behind by 2 points.

Out of the seven states on the battleground list, three are within the margin of error (typically ±3 points). This remains a close race that will likely be fought through Election Day, and this year, like 2000, possibly after Election Day.

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

National Dashboard: Democrats in Strong Position as Convention Begins

Examining the National Dashboard from the last post on July 22 shows little change in the presidential race. As the Democratic National Convention begins, the Democratic presumptive nominee, Joe Biden, is 8 points ahead of Donald Trump. The convention appeared to get initial good reviews. The polls have been frozen in a narrow range and it will be surprising to see much of a bounce. And, of course, the Republican Convention begins next week and may receive its own bounce.

Trump’s approval rating remains at 42 percent in spite of repeated polls showing he has lost the COVID-19 management and the race relations issues by more than 20 percent. He does win approval on the economy, but it hasn’t helped yet. His highest approval this year was after impeachment and before the virus. It’s not clear how he gets back to that number.

Most professional pollsters and campaign consultants believe the race will tighten, especially after Labor Day. In fact, the race has closed by one point if July 1st is used as the baseline.

Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Colorado Water Congress Has Gardner and Hickenlooper Together Talking Water at Summer Conference

In one of their first exchanges of the 2020 campaign, the Colorado Water Congress has U.S. Senator Cory Gardner and challenger, John Hickenlooper, in a curated virtual discussion on water issues facing Colorado.

Among the topics are the perennial problems of money for water programs and infrastructure, the drought and its East-West Slope implications, and support for increased storage capacity.

After the candidates present their views and answer questions, the exchange will be discussed by me with an overview of the race, and then Republican consultant Cinamon Watson of Catalyst Public Affairs and Democratic consultant Rick Ridder of RBI Strategies and Research will present their perspectives on the race. We close with a roundtable discussion of politics of the senate race and how water issues will be affected by the election.

For CWC 2020 Summer Conference info, click here

John Hickenlooper (L) and Cory Gardner discuss the Spring Fire
at a press conference, July 5, 2018 | Andy Cross/The Denver Post

Biden Passes First Test. Now the Convention.

Joe Biden passed his first test in a successful selection of a vice president. Not only was the process newly designed for the viral and digital age, but it didn’t leak and the participants stayed supportive of Biden and their fellow competitors. New poll shows Kamala Harris has approval of 54 percent of Americans and 86 percent of Democrats, including 69 percent who strongly approve.

Biden’s next test is a successful convention. Is there viewership? Does Biden perform the basics with a little style? Party united? Star speakers shine? Does party remain center-left and not veer too far off of a position to win swing states? Have they got an economic message?

Monday, August 17, 2020

Third Congressional Now a Competitive Race

A top Democratic polling firm, Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research (GQR) just released a Third Congressional District poll that showed the race is tied (43% Mitsch Bush to 42% Boebert). It was a bit of a surprise. The district was judged to lean Republican because of recent wins by the incumbent Congressman Scott Tipton and Donald Trump’s 12- point win in 2016. The recent history would likely still give Republicans an edge in the district. But, the fact President Trump is also tied with his Democratic opponent, Joe Biden (43% each), this becomes a race.

Neither candidate is well-known, except for extreme images argued by partisans. Diane Mitsch Bush is labeled a “socialist” due to having support for Medicare for All and Democratic positions from her 2018 run. Lauren Boebert is a gun-toting, strong Trump supporter who’s made reference to QAnon. If the presidential race is close in the Third Congressional District, an “extremist” label is unhelpful. If Boebert avoids it, she’ll have the advantage because of her public relations skills and Trump-like positions. But, in a Democratic dominated House, having a pragmatic Democrat may be the preferred choice. Expect major campaigning with millions spent.

Read The Buzz:
Tipton is Gone. Can the Republicans Hold the Seat?

Friday, August 14, 2020

Has Donald Trump Changed America Forever?

President Trump holds his first coronavirus press briefing
 in nearly three months, July 21, 2020 | ABC News photo
Win or lose, has Donald Trump changed American politics forever? The impact of a president, even an exceptional one, is typically not beyond a couple of generations. Although Franklin D. Roosevelt produced policy changes and an activist model of governing that is still admired or reviled depending on one’s viewpoint, it had expended most of its political energy by the 1960s. Ronald Reagan’s well-articulated conservative philosophy made it into the early 2000s, but is now mostly a historical reference among current Republicans. Trump, as the disrupter, the norm breaker, the nationalist and public relations maven, will no doubt be a major influence in national policy, presidential style and governance for many years. But for how long and with how much influence is hard to determine. Recall Barry Goldwater, the landslide loser in 1964, birthed a conservative movement and a spokesperson and advocate who extended his influence for 40 years.

Aspects of the Trump Policy Legacy That Will Remain

If Trump loses, several aspects of his legacy will still be around after the administration changes:
  • Hard borders. Nationalism that is leading to hostility to immigrants and refugees appears popular and widespread and is unlikely to change much in the short term.
  • Free trade. Globalism is in retreat and protectionism, tariffs and other barriers to free trade are in accedence.
  • Isolationism. Reducing America’s international commitments is supported by both parties, but with different approaches.
  • China conflict. Rivalry between China and the U.S. is not likely to dissipate and could intensify and expand to other countries.
Aspects of the Trump Presidency That are Most Likely to End

Although it will depend on the November 3 result, it could be like the wave of legislation passed after the Nixon presidency. If control of the Senate and presidency change, expect the following:
  • Nepotism and emolument rules will be significantly tightened.
  • Inspector generals and whistleblower protections strengthened.
  • Use of military for domestic projects at presidential discretion limited.
  • Reinforce congressional oversight and fiscal control.
  • “America First” will disappear as a slogan.
Republican Politics

If Trump loses, the party nomination process for 2024 will begin immediately with competition among all the factions of the historic party and likely new outside interests and celebrities. Also, the Republican Party will no doubt face a Trump restoration effort led by him or his children.

Renewed Democracy

One aspect of Trump’s term of office has been a worldwide heightened awareness of the fragility of democracy from sustained attacks by a committed authoritarian leading a compliant party. Americans may be ready for a renewal of some aspects of more civil and responsible behavior and dialogue. The protections of democratic governance, such as rule of law, an independent functioning judiciary, robust and responsible media, and legislative oversight, are likely to get renewed interest and support. Promoting democracy may again become an important aspect of American foreign policy.

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Trump May Like Tea With the Queen, But are Brits Up for Trump?

A new Ipsos MORI poll shows three-quarters of the British public (76%) has an unfavorable view of Donald Trump, that’s about 20 points higher than the U.S. public that give Trump both an unfavorable and a disapproval of his performance of about 55 percent.

And, the British would prefer Joe Biden to win the presidency by 69 percent to 12 percent for Trump, again, 20 points higher than in the U.S. where polls put Biden about 50 percent over Trump.

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

Economic Recovery Stalls as Deaths rise: Twin Towers – Part Nine

Since the last Twin Towers report on July 13, California, which had been fifth in COVID-19 fatalities, moved to third, and Texas leapt over a host of states to become fourth, with Florida following it at sixth, and likely to move up the next 30 days as total deaths have kept a steady pace of increases. Fatalities were up 22,000 from mid-June to July and 26,000 since mid-July to August 12 to a total of 168,000.

Although treatments are improving and fatality rates declining, the sudden flare-up after re-opening has spread anxiety about controlling the virus and undermining the confidence of individuals, business and government decision-makers on gauging the safe path to pre-COVID-19 activities. Reconvening schools and athletics and restarting the hospitality and recreational industries have been especially affected.

The unemployment rate in July compared to June went down to 10.2 percent from 11.1 percent in June. That remains a record high, near the top rate in the Great Recession of 2008-09 (10.0% Oct. 2009). Although 1.8 million jobs were added, that was lower than the 4.8 million in June and very few were in goods producing manufacturing.

The recovery was slowed in Florida, Texas and Arizona due to their spikes in COVID-19. The nationwide recovery is now being affected by the growing view that major labor market growth will depend on businesses having confidence that consumer demand will be steady and employees will feel safe. The spikes have reduced confidence, required some rollbacks, and extended the time required for the recovery. The most commonly heard comments are about the lack of national leadership, including the recent failure to extend unemployment payments and federal funding for schools and state and local governments.

See The Buzz:
The Twin Towers of Pain: Part One
The Twin Towers of Pain: Part Two
The Twin Towers of Pain: Part Three
The Twin Towers of Pain: Part Four
The Twin Towers of Pain: Part Five
The Twin Towers of Pain: Part Six
Recession Starts, COVID-19 Continues: Twin Towers – Part Seven
Surge in Infections and Deaths Threatens Jobs: Twin Towers – Part Eight

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Trump’s Approval in Colorado is Below National Average, Hurt by Handling of Coronavirus

In a new Public Policy Polling Colorado poll (robo phone and text), President Trump received 40 percent job performance approval. Nationally, he’s currently between 40 percent (583) and 43 percent (RealClearPolitics).

Trump lost Colorado by 5 points in 2016, and according to this poll, he has gained no apparent support from Clinton voters (only 3% approval), and he is losing self-identified independent voters, which are 38 percent of the sample and 40 percent of registered voters, by 23 points.

Other major deficits for Trump outside of partisanship were women, voters under 46 years of age and of Latino ethnicity.

His handling of the coronavirus has 49 percent of Colorado voters in “strong disapproval” and only 29 percent “strongly approving,” a 20-point negative spread. Most Democrats (85%) “strongly disapprove” of Trump’s handling the virus, but Republicans are more conflicted with only 62 percent “strongly approving” his performance and 25 percent only “somewhat approving.” Democrats are almost entirely united in their disdain for his performance, but Republicans are more ambivalent in approval. The most critical group in Colorado’s elections are independents, and they are two-to-one in “strong disapproval” of Trump’s COVID-19 performance (49% strong disapproval to 24% strong approval). He’s also in negative territory handling the economy, but less so (36% strongly approve and 45% strongly disapprove).

Friday, August 7, 2020

DU Pioneer Legacy Society Hosts Conversation on 2020 Election

On July 29, DU’s Advancement staff sponsored an annual event for its premier contributors. This year, they brought together Professor Seth Masket with me and Anne Trujillo as moderator in a political conversation about the 2020 election. A few questions addressed:
  • Will there be a big November turnout?
  • Can the polls be trusted?
  • Who’s likely to win the Colorado U.S. Senate race?
  • How has Donald Trump changed American politics? 
To hear the conversation, click on the link below and move the bar on the video to about 29:10 minutes in to start watching the conversation.

Ballot Issues Pile Up. Some Cultural, Some Big Money Changes.

Among the seven ballot propositions already approved, three are major advances in the cultural wars (wolves, abortion and citizenship), one is a straight- up partisan advantage effort (popular vote), and two raise more tax revenue (cigarette tax and Gallagher Amendment).

Three of the four waiting approval change the tax structure. Two are reductions and one (medical leave) is an increase. Casinos will most likely be left to self-regulate with one.

Ballot Issues With a Comment

Citizen Initiatives Approved
  • Repeal national popular vote law. A lot of grass root support for repeal, but Democratic tide? Partisan Advantage
  • More gray wolves. Urban vs. rural. Polls say popular, but is it a bad year to hassle ranchers? Cultural War
  • Late term abortion prohibition. Get-out-the-vote item for pro and con activists. Polls say popular. Cultural War
  • Only U.S. citizens can vote. Cultural War
State Legislature Referred
  • Repeal Gallagher Amendment. Major tax shift for businesses and smaller local government districts. Increase Tax Revenue
  • Raise cigarette and vaping products taxes. More Sin Taxes
  • Rules on charitable gaming.
Pending Review of Signatures
  • Lower state income tax of 4.63% to 4.55%. Major Tax Reduction
  • Vote on “fees” that raise big revenue. Major Tax Limitation
  • State-run medical leave. Major Business Tax Increase
  • Casino cities (and their industries) able to set betting limits. Gaming in three cities becomes wide open.

Senate Race Tightens

Cory Gardner needed a poll to show that, despite Donald Trump’s chaotic reelection campaign, he still has a chance in Colorado. It would have been disastrous to go into Labor Day down double-digits to John Hickenlooper. Final money from the national Republican Party, big PACs and dark money sources will get very competitive given the risk to the control of the Senate.

The poll was conducted by Morning Consult with 616 likely Colorado voters from July 17-26, 2020. They also polled in Arizona, Georgia, Michigan and North Carolina. Although the poll provides a lift for the Gardner campaign, it still highlights the challenge of running in tandem with Donald Trump.

The President is 13 points behind Joe Biden in Colorado. He is approximately 6 points lower than his national RealClearPolitics position as of August 3, 2020 (42% Trump to 49% Biden). It suggests that, even if he closes the race nationally, he will still be significantly behind in Colorado. Biden is at 52 percent, or 4 points ahead of Hillary Clinton in 2016 in Colorado (48%), and Trump is 4 points behind his result (43%).

In this poll, Gardner is 3 points (42%) above Trump (39%) and 6 points behind Hickenlooper (48%). Gardner and Hickenlooper were neck-and-neck in their respective senate and governor victories in 2014 (48% and 49%, respectively).

Both Hickenlooper and Gardner have their base voters’ support (87% Democrat and Republican support for each). Hickenlooper’s principle advantage at this point is among self-declared independent voters who claim to support him 48 percent to 35 percent for Gardner, a 13-point advantage. The ranks of independent-type voters have always been large in Colorado, but in a recent surge, they have gained many new residents and younger voters who have been mostly voting Democratic in partisan races since 2018.

The Hickenlooper and Gardner contest compared to the other four states’ polls is near the middle. Democrats are strongest in Arizona, with popular former astronaut Mark Kelly beating incumbent Republican Martha McSally by 16 points. Biden is up 7 points. Republicans do best in Georgia where Trump is only down one point and Republican incumbent David Perdue is up 3 points. In North Carolina, the presidential race is tied at 47 percent each, but Democrat Cal Cunningham is defeating incumbent Thom Tillis by 9 points. Michigan, which Trump barely carried in 2016 to push him over the top in electoral votes, is now a bust. He’s down 10 points to Biden and the Democratic candidate incumbent Senator Gary Peters is up 14.

Thursday, August 6, 2020

Trump is a Problem for Gardner, But Also a Great Benefactor

Donald Trump is losing Colorado today in the presidential race and may drag Cory Gardner down with him. But, it is also a great boon having a friend in the White House worried about Gardner’s re-election.

Much of Gardner’s campaign message will tout what he accomplished for Colorado, including passing the Great American Outdoors Act, moving BLM, securing the Space Force, etc. Gardner is also very adept at working with the Senate leadership. Very impressive record for a freshman, but is it enough?

President Donald Trump signs the H.R. 1957, “The Great American
Outdoors Act,” at the White House, Aug. 4, 2020 | Alex Brandon/AP

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Trump Searches for Silent Majority With New Ads – Unfortunately, It’s Not 1972

The Trump campaign released a couple of new advertisements in target states that have early voting. It’s part of the shift in strategy by the new campaign manager, Bill Stepien. The messaging is basically aimed at the base Trump Republican voters. The message is that Joe Biden is captive of far-left Bernie Sanders, AOC wing of the party. It shouts out: taxes, immigrants and crime.

The Silent Majority strategy is an attempt to replay the Richard Nixon 1972 campaign of running against “acid, amnesty and abortion.” The difference between the Nixon and Trump campaigns is that Nixon managed to quiet most voter concern over the COVID-19 issue of that era – the Vietnam War. Through Vietnamization, Peace with Honor and massive troop reduction from 536,000 in LBJ’s last year to 24,000 in 1972, he could then focus his campaign on social issues and label Democrats “captured by the far-left wing of the party.”

It’s the Pandemic, Stupid
Unfortunately for Stepien, Trump’s still losing by 60 percent to 30 percent the main issue on people’s minds – COVID-19. The Trump campaign is just reinforcing its narrow base, which may get it to 42 percent, but will have a struggle to even get the 46 percent of 2016, much less Hillary Clinton’s 48 percent.

Biden is Not McGovern
The second problem with Stepien, et al’s approach is that George McGovern and the 1972 Democratic Party was clearly controlled by the party’s insurgent wing. McGovern defeated establishment figures, like Ed Muskie and Hubert Humphrey, and the chaotic convention didn’t welcome big city mayors, like Richard Daley, Democratic governors or major labor unions. Biden defeated the liberal wing on Super Tuesday and they surrendered shortly thereafter. The basic Republican message is not a good fit. It’s not 1972.

Watch “Silent Majority” ad here

See Washington Times article:
Trump team’s blitz on Biden shifts to early battlegrounds

The South and West are Rushing Forward in COVID-19 Fatalities

From well back in the queue, California is now in third-place among the states in COVID-19 fatalities, jumping ahead of Massachusetts in the last week. New York and New Jersey are still the frontrunners in number of deaths, but also in managing the virus. Texas is on a tear, and in the last week, overtook Florida in reported deaths. Texas and Florida are now sixth and seventh, respectively, as the states in the Northeast and Midwest have lowered their rates of new infections and deaths.

This is clearly a difficult disease to manage and it’s putting tremendous strain on the health care system, the economy and social relationships in general. But, political leadership from Washington, down to counties and mayors, are reeling from the tension between the virus and the economy. Although there are majorities for safe, careful reopening and return to schools, there is also a strong and vocal minority resisting masks and social distancing and for a rapid return to pre-pandemic conditions.

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Democrats Need Four Seats to Win the Senate – Three are in the West

Democrats need a net of four new seats to win control of the Senate and remove Mitch McConnell as majority leader – a top party goal. They assume they are going to lose the Alabama Senate seat won in 2018 in a very strange special election. They are targeting vulnerable incumbents in Maine and North Carolina. But, three possible wins exist in the Mountain West in Arizona, Colorado and Montana.

  • In Arizona, Mark Kelly is 7 points ahead of incumbent Republican Martha McSally. President Trump is losing to Joe Biden by 4 points. Trump truly needs the state and is visiting it incessantly. He carried it by 3 points in 2016. 
  • Trump is far behind in Colorado. The state received an Ivanka Trump visit, but is not targeted. He’s behind by 13 points. The senate race is closer, but Democrat John Hickenlooper is still 6 points up over Cory Gardner. Trump lost the state by 5 points in 2016. 
  • Montana is new to the list of Democratic senate targets. It is a longer-shot since Trump is ahead by 6 points and won it by 20 points. However, Democrat Governor Steve Bullock is now ahead of incumbent Steve Daines (44% R to 46% D).
If elected, the three new senators would make their state delegations all Democrat, joining with New Mexico (a very likely Democratic win replacing retiring Democrat Tom Udall) and Nevada.

Monday, August 3, 2020

In Last Half of July, Mexico Reaches Third and India Jumps to Top Five in Fatalities

Europe is receding in new virus infections and fatalities, even as it opens up, but the U.S., Brazil, Mexico and India are surging. With Mexico just jumping around the UK to third in deaths, the Western Hemisphere now dominates the COVID-19 crisis. In the last three weeks, the U.S. added 22,000 deaths, about 1,000 a day, a major increase from the plateau reached in June.

Weak health care systems and irresolute leadership appear to be contributing to Brazil, Mexico and India joining the U.S. as the top COVID-19 countries, with France, Italy and Spain falling back in the queue.

After four months, it’s finally dawned on Donald Trump that his presidency was likely to be another fatality of the virus. It’s not clear that the Jair Bolsonaro, Andrés Manuel López Obrador or Narendra Modi – all populist-style leaders – will have the same political problem as Trump, but managing the virus is the overwhelming crisis and political imperative for these times.

See The Buzz:
World Fatalities Pass 560,000: Brazil Now in Second, Mexico Jumps to Fourth and the U.S. Surges Again
World Fatalities Pass 400,000; Brazil Moves to 3rd
Open for Business and Living With the Risk