Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Poll: GOP Poised To Lose Senate Seats From SCOTUS Obstruction

Congressional Republicans have become so determined to prostitute themselves to the ugliest elements of the party base, a group that does not comprise a majority of the base, at least not yet, that they are increasingly ignoring the desires of the sane elements in the GOP and, more importantly, independent voters.  Blatant obstruction plays well with Christofascists (and their Tea Party first cousins) and white supremacists within the base, but could be leading the GOP to lose control of the U.S. Senate.  Two new polls look at the growing anger against obstructionist Republicans.  Politicususa has details.  Here are story highlights: 

Two new polls of Ohio and Pennsylvania revealed that voters are outraged over the Republican plan to block President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee. The anger is so strong that it could cost the GOP incumbent Senate seats in both states.
-Strong majorities of voters- 58/35 in Ohio and 57/40 in Pennsylvania- think that the vacant seat on the Supreme Court should be filled this year. What’s particularly noteworthy about those numbers- and concerning for Portman and Toomey- is how emphatic the support for approving a replacement is among independent voters. In Ohio they think a new Justice should be named this year 70/24 and in Pennsylvania it’s 60/37. Those independent voters are going to make the difference in these tight Senate races, and they have no tolerance for obstructionism on the vacancy.
-Voters are particularly angry about Senators taking the stance that they’re not going to approve anyone before even knowing who President Obama decides to put forward. By a 76/20 spread in Pennsylvania and a 74/18 one in Ohio, voters think the Senate should wait to see who is nominated to the Court before deciding whether or not to confirm that person. Toomey and Portman are out of line even with their own party base on that one- Republicans in Pennsylvania think 67/27 and in Ohio think 63/32 that the Senate should at least give President Obama’s choice a chance before deciding whether or not to confirm them.

If Senate Republicans cave to the conservative activists who are calling for Obama’s nominee to be blocked at all costs, they will be setting themselves up to lose two Senate seats in Ohio and Pennsylvania. The bad news for Sens. Toomey and Portman suggests that the Republican decision to preemptively block any Obama Supreme Court nominee could influence the presidential election in critical states like Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Republicans have badly bungled their handling of the vacancy created by the death of Justice Scalia, and if they stick to their politically unpopular plan, polling suggests that their Obama obstruction will cost them their Senate majority. The bad polling for the potential obstruction in Ohio and Pennsylvania could be the canary in the coal mine warning Republicans that their scheme to block Obama’s nominee might cost them the White House.

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