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John White

Approval Ratings

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First, Second, Third Quarter - 2013

 

Senator Myron Foster (R-PA)

  • Approve - 50%
  • Disapprove - 35%
  • Uncertain - 15%

 

Senator Myron Foster has quickly shot up the ranks, being named the Senate Minority Leader and holding that title for the session thus far, which is different than his counterpart. Senator Foster has made his name known in the press and his home-state as he has worked to amend the Student Tax Reduction and Education Cost Moderation, however, he eventually voted against cloture, which without an effective PR spin left many young voters in the state confused. However, Senator Foster's constant communication with his constituents, his standing against failed leadership and a focus back on the economy has left the voters liking what they are hearing. Senator Foster has made the new jobs bill a cornerstone for him and that will effect his approvals moving forward. Some do worry in the state that his position as Senate Minority Leader, if he will put the Party or his constituents first.

 

 

Senator Mike Prescott (R-AL)

  • Approve - 52%
  • Disapprove - 28%
  • Uncertain - 20%

 

Senator Mike Prescott is enjoying a nice approval rating due to a couple of different factors. Alabama is a reliably red state and Senator Prescott is showing his constituents he aligns with their values. From the debate on Federal Benefits Equality Act, to the bills he, himself has sponsored, Senator Prescott has decisively shown that he is committed to being a solid conservative. The tight-rope that Senator Prescott must walk moving forward is to watch how far to the right he treks before turning off some independent or even conservative democrats. Right now, the Senator is making a name for himself in the state, and holding a town hall was a nice touch to remind folks in the state you are committed to them.

 

Senator Robert Diaz (R-TX)

  • Approve - 42%
  • Disapprove - 38%
  • Uncertain - 20%

 

Senator Diaz, the Vice Chair of the Republican Party, has an interesting take in the first three quarters. Overall, his approvals would have been better, however, some in the state are questioning a vote for relief of certain dreamers. That vote has some conservatives in the state questioning Senator Diaz's stance on the issue and the vote came with no indication or reason. The fall-out of the vote and the no response would have been more, however, Senator Diaz is fighting hard to protect second amendment rights giving rallies to voters and working to protect traditional marriage. Voters in the state still want to hear from their Senator, where he stands on the issue of immigration. Another plus for the stance on fracking and the energy industry as a whole.

 

Senator Matt Grunwald (R-ID)

  • Approve - 45%
  • Disapprove - 35%
  • Uncertain - 20%

 

Senator Grunwald has built a pretty standard Republican resume, with some exceptions. Some in the state, especially young voters did not like the vote on the Student Tax Reduction & Education Cost Moderation Act and some conservatives are questioning the vote for relief for certain dreamers. The good thing for Senator Grunwald is he minimized some fall-outs from students, with an explanation of the vote. He has minimized the fall-out of the dreamer vote with some pretty solid policy outlines, including a shift back to the economy. However, one thing is for sure, some in the state want to understand his stances on issue like immigration before fully getting on board.

 

Senator Gerard Hatfield (R-NH)

  • Approve - 43%
  • Disapprove - 35%
  • Uncertain - 22%

 

Senator Hatfield is walking a fine line in the state of New Hampshire. The Senator, tapped as the chairman of the GOP, could have hurt that tight rope a little bit. With votes against the No Social Security for Nazis Act and Student Tax Reduction & Education Cost Moderation Act and votes for the Industrial Hemp legislation and the Equal Rights Ratification Extension Joint Resolution - the Senator has confused some voters, which is the explanation for a higher uncertain bloc. The Senator must work to continue to define himself, not only through his votes but communicating with his constituents.

 

Senator Bob Baudin (R-AR)

  • Approve - 40%
  • Disapprove - 35%
  • Uncertain - 25%

 

Senator Baudin suffers from a lack of keeping his constituents informed. The Senator has not made any controversial votes, however, his constituents want to hear from him more. The next quarter will help define where many of the uncertain voters are going to go.

 

Senator John Garibaldi (R-OH)

  • Approve - 47%
  • Disapprove - 34%
  • Uncertain - 19%

 

Senator Garibaldi is quickly making a name for himself. Senator Garibaldi has called out the President, been appointed to the AFAJ committee, stood up for Israel in debates and through legislation and helped take some pretty bold stances in the Senate by the Republican Party. The problem that Senator Garibaldi will face moving forward is bringing independents into his fold of approval ratings and not turning off the Democrats in the state too much. Some are uncertain of the Senator, but do like where he is standing on issues and the next quarter will help to further define that. 

 

Senator Timothy Newbury (R-IN)

  • Approve - 45%
  • Disapprove - 38% 
  • Uncertain - 17%

 

Senator Newbury has chosen to make immigration his issue, calling out the Democrats and introducing a comprehensive bill that many voters are intrigued by. However, his vote for cloture on the Equal Rights Ratification Extension Joint Resolution has many voters in the state wondering and the Senator has not addressed this concern. Some are uncertain, some are turned off it will be up to the Senator to walk the line of advocating for immigration but understanding the voters concerns on other issues as well. 

 

Senator Emily "Olive" Smith (R-UT)

  • Approve - 40%
  • Disapprove - 42%
  • Uncertain - 18%

 

Senator Smith has probably the most interesting actions throughout this first three quarters of Congress. Senator Smith has claimed a more of a maverick mantle, however, it has come at a price. Through the sponsorship of the Federal Benefits Equality Act, which recognizes civil unions and the introduction of the Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2013, she has angered conservatives. She has confused those on the left with her defense of DOMA, leaving them uncertain. Further, through her vote, which helped send the Stand with Israel Act back to committee, voting for an amendment which was perceived as against veterans, voting for cloture on the Equal Rights Ratification Extension, but then against final passage - has angered many and confused more. Overall, Senator Smith is intriguing, however, confusing her constituents. Senator Smith will need to speak more to her constituents and help them understand her actions and where she stands on issues to help fix her approval ratings.  

 

Senator Warren Ressler (D-NY)

  • Approve - 52%
  • Disapprove - 32%
  • Uncertain - 16%

 

Senator Ressler has helped his case in a promising state of his positions. Through the sponsorship of the Hydraulic Fracturing Chemical Disclosure Act, and heavy PR on it - it helped win over his constituents. His amendment to repeal DOMA and trying to repeal sequesters has helped him as well. His advocacy for gun policy, culminating in a perceived win on the Fix Gun Checks Act, again has helped his standing in the state. Some are questioning his vote on the National Infrastructure Act, his explanation was valid, but his constituents want action on infrastructure now. Senator Ressler will need to continue with his path to hold on to the approvals he has secured.

Senator Alex Conn (D-NY)

  • Approve - 35%
  • Disapprove - 45%
  • Uncertain - 20%

 

Senator Conn has made a splash for all the wrong reasons. Senator Conn, compared to his counter-part in the state, has left the voters wanting more. Voters are used to the consistency of Senator Ressler and unfortunately Senator Conn has tried to duel others on the Senate floor, voted against No Social Security for Nazis Act, constant outbursts on the Senate floor and even voting against the North Korea State Sponsor of Terrorism Designation Act. Senator Conn must effectively communicate to his constituents his policy, understand his position and understand that his constituents expect better to fix his approvals.

 

Senator Lewis Clayborne (D-OR)

  • Approve - 48%
  • Disapprove - 35%
  • Uncertain - 17%

 

Senator Clayborne is starting to find his groove. Being recently promoted to the Senate Majority Leader, individuals are now looking to the Senator for leadership. It will be imperative moving forward that Senator Clayborne provides that. Senator Clayborne received a bump for it, however, many are uncertain of the pathway forward as he has not done will communicating with his constituents to date. The path forward will help determine how these uncertain voters fall.

 

Senator Max Freeman (D-NJ)

  • Approve - 44%
  • Disapprove - 36%
  • Uncertain - 20%

 

Senator Freeman, who sponsored the No Social Security for Nazis Act, could have helped his approval more by communicating with his constituents a little more in the press. The vote to table National Infrastructure Bank confused many, and with no explanation pushed voters into the uncertain or disapproval mark. These approvals can be fixed, the Senator just needs to finds his groove with his constituents and stake out his positions.

 

Senator Amir Falstini (D-MI)

  • Approve - 42%
  • Disapprove - 40%
  • Uncertain - 18%

 

Senator Falstini made a splash, however, has faded a little as of late. One thing is for sure, Senator Falstini made no secrets where he stands with Israel and Palestine and that has turned many Republican voters in the state off. However, the Senator has not really defined himself on many other issues, so that has left some confused. The high uncertain is as a result of the bold stance, but many want to know where the Senator stands on other issues before making their decision.

 

Senator Harrison LeClavers (D-WI)

  • Approve - 48%
  • Disapprove - 32%
  • Uncertain - 20%

 

The President Pro Tempore has kept the Senate moving through debates, which has helped him stay out of the scandal or limelight for ineffective leadership in that aspect. The President Pro Tempore is usually given a hall pass from debates, which helps him some there, however, diving into the Diversity in Military Leadership Act has helped solidify his support with his core constituents but turned some Republicans off in the state. It will be important for the Senator moving forward to not only run the Senate but show his constituents how he is helping to fix their issues, which some feel has not been accomplished by their Senator yet.

 

Senator Peter Grant (D-CA)

  • Approve - 46%
  • Disapprove - 30%
  • Uncertain - 24%

 

The Senator is enjoying two of his sponsored bills being brought to the floor of the Senate with the Sponsored Healthy Hospitals Act of 2013 and Diversity in Military Leadership Act, which has gained him some traction. These bills have helped make it look to his constituents that he is fighting for them. The proposal for Medicare for All, calls for infrastructure and such have also helped him gain more approvals in the state. Moving forward his constituents would like to hear just a little bit more from their Senator, but so far he is excelling in their eyes.

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President Kline Approval Ratings:

 

Approval: 47.8
Disapproval: 45.1

 

President Kline’s approval ratings have stagnated in recent months. While supporters of the former President Stevenson and President Kline have largely stood by the President, the Kline administration has struggled to reach out to moderates and disillusioned Democrats who have expressed frustration since Kline’s inauguration. Bi-partisan gridlock on the budget in Congress has slowed the President’s momentum, but the passage of the bi-partisan Jobs Creation and Economic Growth Act, and the fact that the budget ultimately failed in a Republican-controlled House, have largely insulated the White House from general frustration over the budget process.
The President has faced some criticism from those on the right who are “tough on crime” for the commutation of Jonathan Pollard and non-violent drug offenders. The commutation of a convicted ex-spy has garnered heavy criticism from Republicans for going soft on National Security. Similarly, some circles on the right claim commuting non-violent drug offenders will simply encourage further drug use.
It will be important for the administration to remember that Kline’s honeymoon with the base is finally ending, so they're looking for something from the President in the coming months if they're going to stay dedicated to him.

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Senate Approval Ratings, First Quarter, 2016

 

Senator John Moreno (R-AZ)

 

Approve: 47%

Disapprove: 46%

Unsure/Neutral: 7%


 

Analysis: Arizona is a right-leaning state, and Senator Moreno stints in his party’s leadership over the past couple of years as well as his current top-contending Presidential campaign make him one of the best known Senators in the country but also comes with significant downsides. His prominence as a partisan leader has soured many left-leaning independents and Democrats, meanwhile his contentious relationship with Republican rival Christopher Williams and the frequent highlighting of his departures from conservative orthodoxy have hurt him some with with the strong base of movement conservatives in Arizona although have worked to endear him to some right-leaning independent and moderate votes. Overall a mixed bag, voters appreciate his leadership and activity but opinions are often complicated by the spotlight of a national campaign. Voters will be closely watching the late-breaking developments, first reported by radio host Dutch Savage about his potential violation of the RNC Charter with his Presidential run though it has yet to gain much traction.


 

Senator Cassius McKnight (R-FL)

 

Approve: 42%

Disapprove: 44%

Unsure/Neutral: 14%

 

Analysis: Senator McKnight was a fairly obscure figure in politics prior to his whirlwind Presidential campaign, which has raised his profile considerably at home just as much as across the nation. Voters have appreciated his increasingly outspoken nature and activity, however his widely panned performance in the second GOP Primary debate marked by an attack dog-style bad attitude and a call to end the military’s involvement with private contractors has already hurt him across the spectrum though the former saw him gain some appreciation from the far-right and opponents of Senator Moreno’s campaign while the latter with those who identity as political libertarians and left-wing pacifists. Some would like to see him translate his more national profile into taking more of a lead on legislative matters.


 

Senator Christopher Williams (R-IL)

 

Approve: 41%

Disapprove: 51%

Unsure/Neutral: 8%

 

Analysis: Much like his two primary opponents, Senator Williams has one of the highest rates of name recognition of any Senator in the nation, heightened by being a complete lightning rod for controversy since he first emerged in the national consciousness during the budget negotiations in 2014. While he has emerged as a hero of movement/populist conservatives across the nation with his frequent attacks on the mainstream party leadership and his strong voice on matters such as illegal immigration and government spending, he has alienated multiple groups from moderate/mainstream Republicans (in one of the rare states in which centrist/liberal Republicans maintain some degree of power), independents, and Democrats by the same measure. In a largely left-leaning state, his reputation as a conservative firebrand has largely limited his appeal to the state’s famous “downstate” conservative voters who passionately support him and right-leaning independents who appreciate his outsider status in a state synonymous with corruption and ethical issues in politics.

 

Senator Jackson Clay (D-IN)

 

Approval: 45%

Disapproval: 43%

Unsure/Neutral: 12%

 

Analysis: Much like those on the Republican side, Senator Clay’s name recognition has been heightened by his Presidential campaign although not to the same extent with a lack of fireworks compared to the GOP primary thus far. Voters appreciated his recent legislative accomplishment with the Rural Revitalization Act as well as he regular updates on social media, but would like to see more coming from his actual press office. While the Democrats of his state appreciated his stepping up to run during a period where the sitting President was largely mum about whether he would seek a term of his own and few else seemed interested and thus largely stand behind him, his campaign has also left many Republican and independent voters in the right-leaning state worried that his views on a variety of issues are too liberal and in-line with the national Democratic Party for their own values.

 

Senator Jackie DuBois (R-NH)

 

Approval: 40%

Disappproval: 35%

Unsure/Neutral: 25%

 

Analysis: Senator DuBois has only recently become an active figure in the eyes of the voters, and thus there has not been much in terms of policy to judge by but many were excited by the news of one of their own becoming the new Chairwoman of the prestigious Senate HELP Committee. Some are concerned that she has shown more interest in commenting on (and just recent endorsing in) the Presidential race in this all-important primary state than actual legislating, a perception which could continue to grow as voters become more familiar if it isn’t rectified.

 

Senator Diego Zamora (R-NM)

 

Approval: 49%

Disapproval: 39%

Unsure/Neutral: 12%

 

Analysis: Senator Zamora had his profile raised with his brief flirtation with a Presidential run and his recent election as the newest Senate Majority Leader. He has been one of the more legislatively active members of the Republican caucus, striking a notably positively-toned and bipartisan image on a variety of economic issues that has endeared him to the more establishment types on both sides but also left many of the more passionate conservative base cold, but that hasn’t stopped him from being among the more (net) popular Senators currently though his support of things like the National Infrastructure Bank and the Import-Export Bank could start doing damage with his own base if his leadership position and resulting increased scrutiny don’t result in a more conservative pivot on right-wing pet issues moving forward.

 

Senator Hollis F. Davis (R-NC)

 

Approval: 43%

Dissaproval: 37%

Unsure/Neutral: 20%

 

Analysis: Senator Davis has only recently become active, but voters have already begun to appreciate his focus and communication on legislative matters. His sponsorship of the always divisive National Right-to-Work Act and increased his standing with his own party while hurting it with Democrats in this state which has become increasingly ethnically diverse and as such more competitive for Democrats in recent years.

 

Senator Lewis Clayborne (D-OR)

 

Approval: 43%

Disapproval: 44%

Unsure/Neutral: 13%

 

Senator Clayborne had established himself as a dominant figure in Democratic politics during the prior session of Congress, with many crediting him with many of the party’s successes during the late Kline/early McLeavers era, but not long after the loss of the Senate Majority he became a ghost in Washington before his recent re-emergence which was seen as a positive development among Oregon voters. While his prior accomplishments have keep his numbers from totally plummeting, many former supporters find themselves on the fence and voters will want to see a return to form in the future if he's to avoid falling deeper into negatives let alone regain net positives.

 

Senator Rachel Andrews (D-PA)

 

Approval: 41%

Disapproval: 36%

Unsure/Neutral: 23%

 

Analysis: Another who seemed to go into hibernation for a period prior to returning with a vengeance, Senator Andrews has made waves as the leading and most vocal opponent of the controversial “Merchant Amendment” in defense of teacher tenure. In a state known both for its many educational institutions and strong rate of union membership and activity, this has endeared her to many who otherwise wouldn’t know her from jane. Voters would like to see more out of the Senator to have a better grasp on where she stands beyond merely matters of education.

 

Senator Hugh Merchant (R-SC)

 

Approval: 42%

Disapproval: 35%

Unsure/Neutral: 23%


 

Analysis: Recently emerging from total obscurity to be elected as the Senate Majority Whip, Senator Merchant has made a big splash in a considerably short period of time as the author of the controversial Merchant Amendment as well as something of an auxiliary figure in the nascent controversy regarding an RNC Charter provision which prohibits RNC and Senate Caucus Leadership participation in the Republican Primary process upon his being the first national endorsement of John Moreno’s campaign. While these have served to raise his name recognition some, as well as a general flurry of activity of late, many voters are still waiting to see exactly where he stands in this traditionally conservative state.


 

Senator Doug Hill (R-WI)

Approve 42%

Disapprove: 36%

Unsure/Neutral: 22%

 

Analysis: Senator Hill, like many others, has only recently come to prominence but has quickly emerged as one of the most active members of the Republican caucus and recently was named Chairman of the influential ASFAJ Committee in the Senate for his efforts. However, voters would like a greater degree of communication on his position on the issues going forward.


 

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Congressional Generic Ballot Polling

 

Generic Republican: 44%

Generic Democrat: 40% 

Undecided: 16%

 

Analysis: With significantly more activity in Congress and taking the lead on numerous issues and getting ahead of the messaging, so far the Republicans seem to have the early advantage in generic polling in the states holding US Senate elections. However, with many tougher states to defend from the strong wave of 2010, them maintaining or strengthening their thin majority is in no way assured. Likewise, with sagging numbers and many tough districts won enroute to a majority in 2014, the Democratic control of the House of Representatives is poised to be among the toughest battles in November. 

 

Republican Leadership Approvals:

Approve: 42%

Disapprove: 49% 

Undecided: 9%

 

Analysis: While the approval ratings of this Congress are "in the red" across the board as is quite common in the modern era, the voters have increasingly been appreciative of the legislative leadership by the Senate Republicans. Independents appreciated the strong voice against immigration and race extremism recently even if the hardliners felt alienated by it, as well as the steady stream of bipartisan or fairly mainstream center-right legislation being progressed as activity has increased in recent months. The core conservative base however has felt abandoned by the caucus embracing things such as the National Infrastructure Bank and the Export-Import Bank they view as anathema to their cause, and going forward they might need to find a way to balance governance and their right-flank.

 

Democratic Leadership Approvals:

Approve: 35%

Disapprove: 55%

Undecided: 10%

 

Analysis: For a party that controls both the White House and the House of Representatives, and is only narrowly in the minority in the US Senate, many voters (including those of their own party) have been frustrated by the lack of real successes as Congressional Democrats, with their own base of working class union voters increasingly angry over their lack of real leadership on the renewed effort by Republicans to weaken organized labor and independent voters seeing the party as lacking direction. Voters hope that, as primary season winds down, that the party will refocus for a renewed effort for real legislative wins in the common months as a election day nears.

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Senate Approval Ratings, Second Quarter, 2016

 

 

Senator John Moreno (R-AZ)

 

Approve: 49%

Disapprove: 47%

Unsure/Neutral: 5%


 

Analysis: Moreno has seen both his approvals and disapprovals rise in nearly equal numbers. While he now finds himself as the presumptive Republican nominee for President, the extremely bitter and divisive primary remains well on the minds of many of the hardliner wing of the GOP who supported Christopher Williams as despite Williams giving his endorsement over to Moreno, many have felt little effort to bring them into the fold. Meanwhile, Moreno's frequently longwinded feuding over social media with suddenly active Senate Democrats over his role in budget negotiations in 2014, not to mention the recent memory of the Williams fight, have many voters concerned he is more concerned with hashing out personal disputes than representing their interests.


 

Senator Gabriel Gonzalez (D-IL)

 

Approve: 40%

Disapprove: 38%

Unsure/Neutral: 22%

 

Analysis: Having only recently appeared in the public eye, pretty much all voters know about Senator Gonzalez is that he's pro-union rights and he really, really doesn't care for his fellow Democratic Senator and Presidential candidate Jackson Clay. Most voters of all ideological background would like to see the Senator talk about and focus more on his legislative duties in the Senate rather than commenting on Presidential politics, in particular the over 30% (according to recent polling) of Illinois Democrats who support Senator Clay's (from neighboring Indiana) campaign for President. 


 

Senator Christopher Williams (R-IL)

 

Approve: 38%

Disapprove: 55%

Unsure/Neutral: 7%

 

Analysis: The bottom has fallen out for Senator Williams. In the aftermath of what was a rough end to an already tumultuous Presidential campaign, complete with accusations of many members of his own party that his remarks after the incident in New Mexico was essentially a endorsement of racial violence and white supremacist-linked groups involved, a relatively lesser but still notable scandal regarding the improper funneling of Williams Inc. money into his campaign accounts, and the decision not to seek re-election in his state and leave a relatively untested Republican candidate to try and defend this tough blue-leaning seat have all combined to make clearly the most unpopular Senator in the country.

 

Senator Jackson Clay (D-IN)

 

Approval: 46%

Disapproval: 45%

Unsure/Neutral: 9%

 

Analysis: While some who feared that Senator Clay had veered too far from the mainstream within his campaign feel fairly satisfied that he is steering his message back on course towards the center with his recent criticism of large minimum wage hikes and collaboration with Majority Leader Zamora, most of what voters hear about Jackson Clay or from him anymore are the increasingly divisive and sharp campaign rhetoric out of both his and the President's camps. While some moderates on both sides support his attacks on the right towards the President, and the rhetoric from some of the President's supporters accusing him of conservatism actually helping his numbers with independents, the party's left wing and those who support the President's campaign have found themselves feeling fairly ambivalent if not hostile as the DNC primary increases its position in the current media spotlight.

 

Senator Jackie DuBois (R-NH)

 

Approval: 40%

Disapproval: 44%

Unsure/Neutral: 16%

 

Analysis: Despite previous polling having clearly indicated that voters wanted more legislative action and commentary from Senator DuBois and less livetweeting of the Republican Primary, it was a call that seemed to go completely unheeded with large gaps in participation on the committee she herself Chairs in the Senate and pretty much all amounts of public communication since the previous approvals having been related to Moreno's campaign or attacks against that of Christopher Williams, with almost no public communications at all coming since the conclusion of the GOP primary race. Senator DuBois has entered perilous territory, finding her numbers underwater for the first time.

 

Senator Diego Zamora (R-NM)

 

Approval: 50%

Disapproval: 45%

Unsure/Neutral: 5%

 

Analysis: Voters appreciate Senator Zamora's strong visibility and levels of activity as always, but his numbers have become much more polarized of late for a variety of issues. Even as most of the mainstream factions of his party at home have lined up behind him, impressed with his increased willingness to go on offense while still mainstaining some of his "dealmaking" credentials, this has also led to more independents and Democrats having negative views of the Senate Majority Leader. Likewise, his decision to break from typical norms for Congressional leadership in endorsing in a Presidential primary as well as his otherwise well received response to the violence in his state has caused many of the hard-right elements of his party already uneasy with his bipartisan streaks to begin quiet revolt against him. Related, his public announcement via Twitter that he would never appoint Senator Williams to a committee, followed by promptly appointing Williams to one within hours of his withdrawal from the Presidential race and endorsement of John Moreno has drawn scrutiny and criticism from all sides.

 

Senator Oriris Storm (D-NY)

 

Approval: 44%

Disapproval: 41%

Unsure: 15%

 

 

Analysis: The former White House Chief of Staff certainly knows how to make a big splash in a short period of time. Senator Storm has quickly become a leading voice on the issues of criminal justice reform, race relations and immigration in the Democratic Party. He also has become one of the most vocal critics of presumptive GOP nominee John Moreno, openly admitting to leaking his comments during previous budget negotiations to the press and even outright calling for his resignation regarding what he viewed as soft response to the controversies surrounding Williams upon his leaving the Presidential race. Some Democrats in his state were also quite shocked and confused at his endorsement of Jackson Clay, who doesn't seem to be a close fit for his own vocal agenda as a Senator. The combination of a higher-than-usual name rec upon entering office, and highly divisive and combative behavior since has led him to higher than usual numbers in both categories with his first set of approvals.

 

 

Senator Hollis F. Davis (R-NC)

 

Approval: 44%

Dissaproval: 38%

Unsure/Neutral: 19%

 

Analysis: Having come out of the gate strong, Senator Davis has recently seen a large drop off in activity since participating in right-to-work rallies, but his numbers have remained fairly static with the legislative success of a number of bills he sponsored. 

 

Senator Lewis Clayborne (D-OR)

 

Approval: 44%

Disapproval: 47%

Unsure/Neutral: 9%

 

Analysis: While the voters in Oregon are glad to see their Senator, the Minority Leader of that Chamber, back to full-force activity, not all the responses have been positive for him. The perception of him as an "attack dog" for the LeCleavers White House has one which has begun to stick quite a bit, often utilizing Twitter to launch multi-part attacks on fellow Democrat Jackson Clay as well as various leading Republicans, particularly with the recent disputes regarding who deserves credit for the once-divisive budget upon recent news of its success thus far. While some do believe that the Minority Leader deserves credit for the budget and the recent tougher legislative fight put up by his caucus, his public persona has many concerned that he is overly thin-skinned and too deeply loyal to a President whose public image is still in recovery mode, leading to troubling numbers for a Senate Leader seeking re-election this November. 

 

 

Senator Rachel Andrews (D-PA)

 

Approval: 39%

Disapproval: 39%

Unsure/Neutral: 22%

 

Analysis: With almost no public profile since she first emerged as a voice for teachers unions, Senator Andrews has left many of her constituents wondering about where she stands on literally anything else.

 

Senator Hugh Merchant (R-SC)

 

Approval: 46%

Disapproval: 38%

Unsure/Neutral: 16%


 

Analysis: Minority Whip Merchant has plugged away on the legislative side of things in a fairly low-key manner aside from being a leading critic of the State Department's interpretation of Hyde Amendment which has endeared him to religious conservatives, but has largely towed the center-right establishment line behind other leadership on both attack lines and spin. In this reliably conservative state, he's doing about what is expected to keep his numbers afloat. 


 

Senator Doug Hill (R-WI)

Approve 44%

Disapprove: 39%

Unsure/Neutral: 17%

 

Analysis: Senator Hill recently got a promotion to President Pro Tem, and has continued plugging away legislatively and was only a minor voice in the divisive GOP primary. However, as he seeks re-election, voters are likely going to need more evidence that he deserves another term than his fairly quiet presence has provided thus far. 

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Senate Approval Ratings, Quarter One, 2017

 

 

 

Senator John Moreno (R-AZ)

 

Approve: 45%

Disapprove: 48%

Unsure/Neutral: 7%


Analysis: During the final weeks of the Presidential campaign, John Moreno's focus seemed to shift entirely to the campaign with rarely ever utilizing his press office or Twitter account for public outreach. In the aftermath of the campaign, he has found support among Republicans fall some due to those disgruntled at his campaign's loss as well as by some independents who found his lack of a concession speech or public congratulations to his opponent disrespectful though some find it understandable. As the memories of the campaign fade into a new session, he could easily find himself making a recovery should he buckle back down legislatively and reopen the lines of communications with the public.

 

 

Senator David Burns (D-CA)

 

Approve: 40%

Disapprove: 35%

Unsure/Neutral: 25%

 

Analysis: New character, nothing to grade, starts at the baseline numbers.

 

 

Senator Amy Salazar (D-CT)

 

Approve: 40%

Disapprove: 35%

Unsure/Neutral: 25%

 

Analysis: New character, nothing to grade, starts at the baseline numbers.

 

 

Senator Matthew Williams (D-FL)

 

Approve: 43%

Disapprove: 38%

Unsure/Neutral: 19%

 

Analysis: Having recently come out of relative obscurity in the past six months to become a major player in Washington, elected as Senate Minority (now Majority) Whip, Senator Williams has earned a some appreciation from his constituents with his dedication to a budget deal having introduced two of the continuing resolutions to keep the country's lights on so to speak as well as his fairly regular comments on pressing issues. However, in this textbook definition "swing state", the partisan and inside baseball tone of a some of these communications have some people worried and there seems to have been very little thus far to set him apart from the national party line. Constituents will be looking to see if the coming session presents opportunities for him to promote bills more specifically representing Florida's interests and perhaps show some independence from the White House and National Democratic Party.

 

 

Senator Kamaka N. Nikolao (D-HI)

 

Approve: 40%

Disapprove: 35%

Unsure/Neutral: 25%

 

Analysis: New character, nothing to grade, starts at the baseline numbers.

 

 

Senator Gabriel Gonzalez (D-IL)

 

Approve: 35%

Disapprove: 41%

Unsure/Neutral: 24%

 

Analysis: After spending much of the primary season having been one of the most vocal critics of Jackson Clay (as well engaging in Twitter fights as Clay's ill-fated running mate and fellow Senator Osiris Storm) and alienating a decent chunk of his own party with the sharpness of his rhetoric, Senator Gonzalez seemed to all but disappear from the public eye throughout the rest of the election season until just recently reemerging which has caused his numbers to slip considerably in this otherwise Democratic-friendly state. While it is not hard to view a path forward to recovery in this blue state for the Senator, he's going to need to buckle down more legislatively and in public communications for that to happen.

 

 

Senator Dutch Savage (I-IL)

 

Approve: 43%

Disapprove: 34%

Unsure/Neutral: 23%

 

Analysis: After having just barely squeaked through in one of the closest, toughest, and most expensive Senate races of the 2016 cycle, many voters are excited to see what Dutch Savage has in store for them as their United States Senator. Democrats are happy that, despite the efforts of Democratic Senator Hillary Edwards in the final days to boost his Republican opponent, he ultimately chose to caucus with the Democrats in the Senate, and he's enjoying something of a natural "winners boost" that will need to be backed up by some public communications and legislative action in the future to be maintained.

 

 

Senator Jackson Clay (D-IN)

 

Approval: 45%

Disapproval: 43%

Unsure/Neutral: 12%

 

Analysis: After losing the Democratic Primary to President LeClavers, Jackson Clay has been much more quiet in his public communications aside from a few recent Tweets and campaign trail surrogates leading up to the election. He did a solid job during the later stages of his campaign showcasing his independence from the national party on key issues which helps with unsure moderates and independent voters, as does his work with Republican leadership to achieve bipartisan education reform. While his numbers have had a slight net improvement, more people have moved to being fairly on-the-fence regarding the Senator and eager to see what his plans are for the coming session and hope to hear him using his increased name recognition to be a voice for State of Indiana in the months to come.

 

 

Calvin M. Coburn (R-KY)

 

Approve: 40%

Disapprove: 35%

Unsure/Neutral: 25%

 

Analysis: New character, nothing to grade, starts at the baseline numbers.

 

 

Senator Jackie DuBois (R-NH)

 

Approval: 32%

Disapproval: 50%

Unsure/Neutral: 22%

 

Analysis: With voters having already had decidedly mixed feelings about Senator DuBois who seemed to only comment in public when it involved her support of John Moreno in the Republican Primary, Senator DuBois seems to have dropped off the face of the Earth since then with no real public communications of any kind to speak of nor even maintaining an up-to-date voting record, causing her numbers to plummet in the past 6 months.

 

 

Senator Diego Zamora (R-NM)

 

Approval: 47%

Disapproval: 45%

Unsure/Neutral: 8%

 

Analysis: After the 2016 Senate campaign saw Republicans lose 6 races (net losses: 4) as well as the majority in the US Senate, Diego Zamora announced his intention to step down as the leader of his caucus going forward to focus more on New Mexico in the new session. While this move hurt him with some mainstream members of his own party as well as right-leaning independents, who liked the way he operated and/or the greatly increased influence for the state that came naturally to his title, it was well received by many other ideological groups though many of those are not the core base of Zamora's support. Senator Zamora saw his approvals take a hit this cycle with an increase in unsure/neutral voters in large part because of the mixed legacy he leaves as SML where he lead over a much more moderate direction than usually seen by Republican Leadership that significantly hurt his standing among movement conservatives, as well as being one of the loudest of the partisan wrangling over the budget that included a lot of he said, she said style accusations and spin in the press and on social media that hurt the leadership of both sides with voters. Many New Mexicans are eager to see how Senator Zamora legislates now that he's back in the rank-and-file

 

 

Senator Hillary Edwards (D-NY)

 

Approval: 35%

Disapproval: 42%

Unsure/Neutral: 23%

 

Senator Hillary Edwards has very little public profile, particularly outside of her native NYC, and does not have much of a record to this point, so the first real impression many New Yorkers got of her as their United States Senator was her making a splash on national election news for stumping for the Republican nominee Genevieve Washburn in the US Senate race in Illinois against the left-leaning independent Dutch Savage (who has caucused with the Democrats since narrowly winning), which was cited by many analysts as having helped significantly bridge the gap in one of the closest campaigns in the country that came dangerously close to being a deciding factor in the final control in the Senate. The decision to not just endorse but campaign for a fairly conservative Senate candidate with the Senate Majority on the line has severely hurt Senator Edwards within her own ranks, with progressive and liberal voters in particular leading the backlash and some belief that without a major course correction this could leave her vulnerable to a primary challenge next year. Her numbers are underwater but certainly not insurmountable in part because the hit she took from within her own ranks was softened a bit by independents and some moderate Republicans, but also because her overall ideological profile is far from well defined.

 

 

Senator Osiris Storm (D-NY)

 

Approval: 46%

Disapproval: 43%

Unsure: 11%

 

Even as he's grown to national prominence, first as the lead surrogate-turned-ill fated running mate for the later stages of Jackson Clay's Presidential campaign, and then as DNC Vice Chair and the recently elected President pro tem of the US Senate, opinions on Osiris Storm remain as divisive as always. Within his own party, many progressives love his sharp partisan rhetoric and in-your-face style but were put off by his strong support for Senator Clay and incredibly negative attacks on President LeClavers (whom they by and large supported) during the primary, while many moderates are somewhat put off by his often sharply negative attacks on the GOP even when they agree on policy, although both groups generally approve of at least the majority of his performance loosely. Support among Republicans is practically nonexistent, and independent support remains limited largely to just the most left-leaning as well as unaffiliated union members who appreciate his strong and vocal opposition to right-to-work efforts.

 

 

Senator Lewis Clayborne (D-OR)

 

Approval: 46%

Disapproval: 44%

Unsure/Neutral: 10%

 

Lewis Clayborne, who is back for his third consecutive session as the Democratic Senate Leader as the retake the majority, has the same issues with his constituents as always: sharp partisan attacks on a regular basis, a frequent focus much more on national issues than those of his own state, another accusation-heavy round in the budget negotiation ring. However, thanks in large part to his decisive re-election campaign that saw him embrace his status as hard-nosed negotiator and strategist against an opponent widely seen as much more conservative than the Oregon electorate as a whole, he has found himself back in positive territory for the first time in a year or so, though his approvals are fairly far off from his final results indicating that there were a fair amount of people who less voted for Lewis Clayborne and more against his opponent. 

 

 

Senator Rachel Andrews (D-PA)

 

Approval: 31%

Disapproval: 49%

Unsure/Neutral: 20%

 

Analysis: While the work of Senator Andrews as DNC Chair during the 2016 elections was fairly well received, recently being elected to a full term in the position, the voters of Pennsylvania are beginning to wonder why one of their Senate seats is being occupied by a somebody whose only job seems to be that as a national party strategist. With a near-naked voting record, and nothing but a couple of GOP-attacking tweets to her name during the past six months, there hasn't been much for the people of Pennsylvania to even give approval to. Given that this seat is up for re-election in 2018 and the GOP managed to flip Pennsylvania on the Presidential side of things, it is going to take a lot of works to turn things around in what is surely to be a top target for Republicans next year.

 

 

Senator Hugh Merchant (R-SC)

 

Approval: 48%

Disapproval: 42%

Unsure/Neutral: 10%


Analysis: Newly elected as the Republican's Senate Minority Leader, Senator Hugh Merchant has had a whirlwind year, being plucked out of relative obscurity to serve as Senate Whip last session and emerge as leading voice for the conservative education reform movement, he then served as the Vice Presidential running mate for fellow Senator John Moreno in their unsuccessful bid for the White House, seen as a more conservative balance to the ticket that helped them win back some of the voters on the right shed by the bitter primary fight. While his focus has largely been on the campaign trail, South Carolina was the only East Coast Southern state that the Moreno-Merchant ticket managed to carry and his numbers remain in  decent shape even if not spectacular as he shifts to his new legislative role that requires a lot more work and garners much more scrutiny.

 

 

Senator John Saunders (R-TX)

 

Approval: 42%

Disapproval: 34%

Unsure/Neutral: 24%

 

Analysis: While only very recently becoming known in the public eye, Senator Saunders has made a bit of a splash with recently being the newest in a long line of Republicans to take the lead in pushing for national right-to-work legislation and announcing the formation of a US Senate Tea Party Caucus in the aftermath of an election which saw the usually quite energized right-wing base of the GOP revolt against the increasingly moderate direction taken by Senate Leadership.

 

 

Senator Caroline Jefferson (R-TX)

 

Approve: 44%

Disapprove: 35%

Unsure/Neutral: 21%

 

Analysis: While relatively obscure until recently, Senator Jefferson has quickly proven herself to be a vital conservative voice in Washington, having introduced numerous pieces of legislation that have strong appeal among the conservative voters of her base across a myriad of subjects, and even being appointed as the leading Republican on the ASFAJ Committee in the US Senate. Many voters hope to see her continue down this path to prominence as the Republicans seek a new path forward after losses in November.

 

 

Senator Max Baudin (D-WV)

 

Approval: 37

Disapproval: 37

Unsure/Neutral: 26

 

Analysis: Senator Baudin has done very little in the public eye.

 

 

Senator Bob Smith (R-WY)

 

Approval: 41

Disapproval: 35

Unsure/Neutral: 24%

 

Analysis: Having only recently emerged in the spotlight, the one bill promoted so far by Senator Smith was moderately well received.

 

 

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APPROVAL RATINGS, Q2 2017, PART 1 of 3

 

President Harrison LeClavers (Democrat- Wisconsin), 

Approval: 44%

Disapproval: 47%

Undecided: 9%

 

Analysis: Harrison LeClavers HAD a honeymoon period. But that is now gone as his lack of activity has changed the narrative of his presidency. Drawing comparisons to George H.W. Bush, who by his own admission lacked “the vision thing”, Harrison LeClavers is disappointing members of both his base and the independents who narrowly swung him the election. But perhaps most disappointed of all are the Blue Dog Democrats who were essential to his victory in the states of Georgia and Florida. Two states that swung him the election. The honeymoon period was the best window, in terms of public support, to push through an agenda. That is now gone. LeClavers still has time to make up for it. There is three and a half years left. But he best begin now or else buyers remorse among Democratic primary voters and the general populace will take hold. 

 

National Media Quotables:

“Two good justices have been appointed. The LeClavers legacy so far is that he will dramatically shift the Supreme Court towards a more progressive future. Otherwise, though, we are still waiting on him to deliver on his promises,” -Rachel Maddow, MSNBC

 

“The president won thanks to the trust of Blue Dog Democrats. And while we have backed his nominees, he needs to get to work some more on behalf of the American people. It’s time for him to wake up, strap on his boots, and get America back to work. I’m glad he had a nice honeymoon, but let’s get some stuff done,” -Former Senator Max Cleland, Georgia

 

“You see, my friends, the liberal drive-by media is suddenly realizing we were right all along. He Harrison LeClavers was do-nothing Harry all along! Not only is he a commie bastard, but John Moreno was right the whole damn time when he said that this president had no vision. The lefties are finally waking up and realizing that.” -Rush Limbaugh, “EIB Network”

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APPROVAL RATINGS, Q2 2017, PART 1 of 3

The Senate Democrats

 

Lewis Clayborne (Democrat - Oregon)

Approval: 49%

Disapproval: 39%

Undecided: 12%

 

Analysis: Having won reelection and continued on his path of hardwork and delivering results, the people of Oregon’s opinion of Senator Clayborne has improved. He is, in many circles, one of the most respected members of the Senate body. Plus, not only has he advertised himself well in the press offices but voters can easily access his voting record. Senator Clayborne has been, perhaps, the best model of consistency and delivering results over the last two years. However, there may be trouble on the horizon as discontent appears to be brewing within the Democratic Party. While Senator Clayborne may not be the target of the frustration, he may need to work some magic to keep the party and unified and intact heading into the next elections.

 

Constituent Quotable:

“Hardworking guy who sticks to his principles and works across the aisle. I’m proud to have him as my senator, despite some policy disagreements,” -Butch Gates, Las Vegas


 

Marc Baudin (Democrat - Ohio)

Approval: 42%

Disapproval: 37%

Undecided: 21%

 

Analysis: Senator Marc Baudin is one of the Democratic Party’s new Blue Dog voices in the upper chamber of Capitol Hill. And thus far, he has done a solid job. Most voters are pleased with his handling of his job, though he has yet to do much to dramatically distinguish himself in the eys of most voters. His biggest problem thus far is his voting record needs updating so his constituents see what he’s doing. Otherwise, however, he is doing a good job marketing himself. Most Washington D.C. analysts view him as a politician with a high ceiling and as someone who may be able to bridge the divide between the progressive wing of the party and the emerging Blue Dogs.

 

Constituent Quotable

“Marc Baudin is up there representing Ohio well. I do wish he’d update his voting record a bit. But I have read in the papers how he’s getting the job done. So far, so good, though it’s still early.” -Bertha Wells, Toledo

 

Dutch Savage (Independent - Illinois)

Approval: 44%

Disapproval: 33%

Undecided: 23%

 

Analysis: Not many people would have anticipated even a year ago that the media personality Dutch Savage would ever run for public office. But not only did Dutch Savage run and win the United States Senate seat in Illinois, but he is making many of his constituents proud. Savage has proposed a myriad of bills thus far in the first session. While he has not found any particular niche issue, he has covered a broad array of topics on both foreign and domestic policy. Perhaps most important is that he is offering legislation to appeal to essential rural Illinoian voters. He could perhaps focus more on improving his standing in the liberal bastion of Chicago which is instrumental for any Democrat trying to counter the more conservative rural vote. The biggest dilemma facing Senator Savage is he must find a way to balance his role as an independent while appealing to the liberal vote that helped elect him last November, hence the high level of undecided voters still figuring out their opinions on their senator. Regardless, Savage is off to a great start as a United States Senator and his constituents are pleased with his efforts.

 

Constituent Quotable

“I like what’s he’s doing. It’s about time we had a Democrat fighting for rural Illinois instead of focusing all their time on appeasing the big wigs in Chicago.” - Kurt LeGunn



 

Kamaka Nikolao (Democrat - Hawaii)

Approval: 47%

Disapproval: 32%

Undecided: 21%

 

Analysis: Nikolao is emerging quickly as a rising young star in the Democratic Party. Extremely active in both his press office and on the Senate floor, Senator Nikolao has cast himself as a strong progressive who legislates on both national and state issues. Numerous bills of his directly target the interests of Hawaiians and have earned him applause from his constituents. He’s decidedly liberal and in Hawaii, that’s a good thing, especially if you’re delivering the goods.

 

Constituent Quotable

“This kid delivering for our state. I’m glad to see he’s focusing his efforts on this state and not merely on advancing his career on the national level.” -Bridget West, Honolulu


 

Jackson Clay (Democrat - Indiana)

Approval: 48%

Disapproval: 44%

Undecided: 8%

 

Analysis: Jackson Clay’s power in the Beltway is rising. He is considered by many to be the most powerful Blue-Dog Democrat in the United States and may have another potential presidential bid in his future. The people of Indiana see him rising in the ranks. However, the also see a voting record that’s not updated and a press office that could be doing a significantly better job at marketing what legislation he is putting out there to better their lives. Indiana voters do not really care about how effective a politician is at moving nominations along in committee. It’s good news, but it’s not what they pick up the newspaper for and to read about. Clay has proposed and fought for legislation that Indianans like. Plus, he’s now their most powerful voice in years with his new job. Clay’s approvals are higher than his disapprovals, but they could easily be higher if he updates his voting record and begins shaping his message better.

 

“I like Jackson Clay and what he stands for. I proudly voted for him in 2016 and hope he considers running again in 2020. I just wish I could see what’s doing in the 115th Congress instead of only being able to see what he did back in the 114th Congress,” -Clarissa Jeffries, Indianapolis


 

Osiris Storm (Democrat - New York)

Approval: 49%

Disapproval: 39%

Undecided: 12%

 

Analysis: Osiris Storm does not care who he offends or what gets in his way. Unabashedly progressive and one of the more vocal members of the Senate, Senator Storm has quickly distinguished himself as a liberal firebrand who is earning the ire of conservative talk hosts and the adoration of his base and minorities. The passage of his mandatory minimum bill has greatly pleased and roused support among such groups. He has also been a staunch defender of President LeClaver’s nominees. However, his emergence in the spotlight has not been without its fair amount of criticism as many Republicans ripped his handling and behavior as president pro tempore. Storm is quickly becoming the most hated Democrat in the Senate among conservative circles, raising his disapproval rating higher than most of his fellow freshman senators. But in New York, as long as the left loves you and the center can tolerate you, you’re probably going to be fine. And so far, Senator Osiris Storm is doing good. He will need, however, to update his voting record or constituents may sour on him.

 

Constituent Quotable

“He’s ruthless, no doubt. And if I were a Republican or even a moderate Democrat, I’d hate his guts. But man, Osiris Storm means what he means and is pretty good at getting the job done. You know where he stands. Sometimes that’s gonna piss you off, but most of the time he’s getting stuff done,” - Ralph Johnson, Brooklyn


 

Hillary Edwards (Democrat - New York)

Approval: 40%

Disapproval: 37%

Undecided: 23%

 

Analysis: Hillary Edwards is in many ways a lite version of her colleague Osiris Storm. Not quite as beloved by her base but not quite hated by her enemies.  As of late, she has upped her game and is beginning to recover her standing after initially stumbling out of the gate. Senator Edwards has ascended to DNC Chair, a role that fits her well coming from one of the most liberal states in the union.She has kept her voting record pretty well up to date, though the formatting is a bit strange. Her press office is active and voters are generally pleased with what they’re seeing from their senator. She should, however, attempt to target more of her legislation towards her constituents back home and make sure she has some accomplishments to pitch them besides her mere positions of power.

 

“I like Hillary. She can be a bit bland at times, but overall she’s doing a steady job. Unlike Osiris Storm, I actually feel like she could work with people across the aisle. I have high hopes for her.”

- Juanita Morales, Queens


 

Amelia Beyer (Democrat - Minnesota)

Approval: 36%

Disapproval: 37%

Undecided: 27%

 

Analysis: It’s not that she isn’t showing up to work. She is. It’s that Senator Beyer has been completely inactive in her press office and has not touched her voting record. Her constituents are completely in the dark as to her activities, leaving many voters in Minnesota undecided as to how they view her. She should hit the airwaves more and advertise herself more effectively to her constituents, especially in light of the national realignment in politics that is shifting the midwest to the right and the south to the left.

 

Constituent Quotables:

“I haven’t seen or heard much of her in the press. I do know she’s voting, but I’d like to know which way,” -Sally Lillard, St. Paul


 

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APPROVAL RATINGS, Q2 2017, PART 2 of 3

The Senate Republicans

 

Diego Zamora (Republican - New Mexico)

Approval: 49%

Disapproval: 42%

Undecided: 8%

 

Analysis: In light of the GOP’s losses in the 2016 election, Senator Diego Zamora did elect to step down as Senate Leader for the Republicans. Since then, however, Zamora has struck a bipartisan tone on some issues while still appeasing his core base. Reaching an agreement on a Social Security bill with Osiris Storm of all people surprised many and pleased moderates. Standing up against the Kelly nomination pleased conservatives. And sponsoring an array of legislation that he has made readily available in an updated voting record has more than made up for his decline in standing from Republican leadership. Zamora may no longer hold an official position of leadership in the Republican Party, but he without a doubt still one of the prominent faces in their ranks.

 

Constituent Quotables:

“I’m a bit disappointed he’s not Senate Leader anymore, but he’s still going to work and delivering the goods. A top notch senator who I think should consider running for leadership or higher office one day,” -Arthur Davidson, Albuquerque


 

John Saunders (Republican - Texas)

Approval: 50%

Disapproval: 39%

Undecided: 11%

 

Analysis: John Saunders is, without question, the GOP’s fastest rising star as he has shifted the party to the right. A proud Tea Party conservative, he has maintained an active press office and helped unify the GOP’s efforts in the Senate. Considering his home state and the right-wing of his views, Saunders already has a nice advantage. No one is better positioned to appease his base’s concerns than Senator Saunders. However, in order to best enhance his position and strengthen his approvals in Texas, he should try and propose more legislation directly catered to his home state.

 

Constituent Quotables:

“Senator Saunders has risen fast and is making a name for himself. I like the direction he’s taking the party. We need more big bold conservatives in congress,” -Andy Landon, El Paso


 

Christopher Donnelly (Republican - Tennessee)

Approval: 47%

Disapproval: 40%

Undecided: 13%

 

Analysis: Senator Donnelly has been active in his press office as a leading voice on the airwaves for conservatism. Senator Donnelly has also been on Capitol Hill and kept his voting record pretty well up to date. However, Tennessee is no longer a guaranteed Republican hold. It leans to the right, but no longer outside the realm of Democratic reach with the emergence of the Blue Dogs in the south. One major area of improvement for his public standing would be to get to proposing more legislation and targeting it for his constituents. Otherwise, a more than solid start for Donnelly.

 

Constituent Quotable:

“Good so far from our senator. He is showing up and voting and he keeps us updated on what’s happening. I am still looking forward to his plans to improve our state.” -David Parker, Chattanooga


 

Elias Richmond (Republican - Pennsylvania)

Approval: 41%

Disapproval: 39%

Undecided: 20%


Analysis: Senator Elias has emerged as a major player in Washington D.C. as whip. However, his lack of activity in recent days has damped down his approvals. Plus, he needs to keep an updated voting record. If he is a bit more active, expect his approvals to rise exponentially in light of the rightward shift of the midwest.

 

Constituent Quotables:

“Yeah, I’m glad and all he’s whip. But I’d like to see him do a little bit more than what he’s done so far.” -Loretta Brown, Scranton

 

 

Calvin Coburn (Republican - Kentucky)

Approval: 50%

Disapproval: 36%

Undecided: 14%

 

Analysis: Senator Coburn is not the most active, but what he does do fits the mold of his state. Kentucky, the state that elected the libertarian Rand Paul in 2010 with a conservative streak, is pleased with Senator Coburn's constitutional pitch and focus. His opposition to President LeClavers' nominees is particularly notable and welcomed on his base. If he ups his activity and focuses on his press office, Coburn will undoubtedly become a major player in Washington D.C. for years to come.

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Generic Congressional Ballot, Q2 2017

Republicans: 43%

Democrats: 40%

Undecided: 18%

 

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NATIONAL APPROVAL RATINGS

Presidential Approval Ratings, 4Q 2017

President Harrison LeClavers (Democrat- Wisconsin), 

Approval: 39% (-5%)

Disapproval: 53% (+6%)

Undecided: 8% (-1%)

 

Analysis: The LeClavers Administration is not sunk. It is not in a unrecoverable position. But while the administration's handling of the hurricanes down south was effective, the divisions within the party and prolonged spurts of inactivity have dragged President LeClaver's numbers below 40%. Furthermore, the nomination of Marc Baudin and the bombing of Syrian military bases have received negative reactions from the progressive wing of activists and voters in the Democratic Party. President LeClavers can bounce back. But this may be the crossroads or tipping point that determines the direction of his approvals for the next few years. Will he adapt and adjust his strategy to resurrect his numbers like Reagan in 1986, Clinton in 1994, or Nixon in 1971? Or will he become a premature lame-duck like George W. Bush in 2005? Regardless, his approvals will play a major role in the upcoming midterms and likely carry ramifications down the ballot for Democrats in both 2018 and 2020.

 

QUOTABLES: 

 

"Finally, President LeClavers is showing some signs of a backbone by bombing the Syrian government and nominating a somewhat respectable man for the vice presidency in Marc Baudin. But let's see how long it takes for him to cave to the far-left socialists within his party," - Sean Hannity, Fox News

 

"Crazy Harrry is bombing Syria to distract from the fact his poll numbers are falling off a cliff. Mark my words, my listeners,  this will not bode well for the left in 2018. I, the great El Rushbo, prophecy that this president is going to cost the Democrats the Senate in 2018 and will sink them in 2020. Keep up the good work, sir." - Rush Limbaugh, EIB Network

 

"The president does need to get more active, but I am still on board in light of the fact he's appointed a compromise candidate in Marc Baudin, taken a firm stand against the Assad regime, and worked to help the ailing citizens suffering from disaster both here and abroad. He's given us good leadership in crisis. I just hope and expect he can apply that same leadership to everyday." - Rachel Maddow, MSNBC

 

"I haven't given up on him yet, but what the hell? You're caving to a bunch of Democratic turncoats with the Blue Dogs by appointing Marc Baudin? And now you're puling a Dubya by bombing Arab countries? Harrison LeClavers is an inspiring man, but I'm tired of him bending his knee to the feckless cowards who parade about as Blue Dogs." -Keith Olbermann, The Resistance

 

 

Generic Congressional Ballot, Q2 2017

Republicans: 41% (-2%)

Democrats: 37% (-3%)

Undecided: 22 (+5%)

 

Analysis: Had it not been for the country's negative reaction to perceived partisanship from the Republican Party, the Democrats might already be in "shellacking" territory. The Republican Party has so far missed the opportunity to contrast themselves with the Democrats whose Blue Dog-Progressive split is now bordering on a civil war. "I don't think it's necessary to name any specific individuals, but it's beyond apparent Republicans came up short when it comes to portraying themselves as effective leaders and uniters on Capitol Hill," said Johnny Bailey, Pennsylvania Avenue Journal correspondent.

The Democrats meanwhile seemed hell bent on sinking their own ship until recently. With the V.P. nomination up for a vote and the party split on Marc Baudin, it is beyond evident that the emergence of the Blue Dog Democrats has been met with an angry mass of progressives who are not that fond of the more moderate influence on the party's politics. The Democrats must find a balance between the traditional liberal supporters and the new Blue Dogs or the new "Blue South" dream that began in 2016 may very well be a fleeting moment. 

 

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Democratic Approvals, Q4, 2017

 

Osiris Storm (Democrat - New York)

Approval: 54%

Disapproval: 40%

Undecided: 6%

 

Analysis: Osiris Storm has emerged as the definitive face of numerous factions of the Democratic Party. African-Americans, Latinos, young people, and the progressive activists base of the Democratic Party are all falling in love with the New York Senator. Perhaps most surprising of all, however, is he has demonstrated the ability to work across the aisle to strike and pass bipartisan deals to overhaul the education system and drug laws. However, He has made many enemies already among the Blue Dogs and he has not been without controversy when wielding a gavel. Overall, though, Senator Osiris Storm is quickly positioning himself as one of the major faces of progressive politics for years to come. 

 

 

Kamaka Nikolao (Democrat - Hawaii)

Approval: 50%

Disapproval: 34%

Undecided: 16%

 

Analysis: Nikolao has distinguished himself as a reliable presence for the Democrats and progressives on Capitol Hill. While he lacks the public notoriety of Senator Osiris Storm, he has quietly been able to make forays into key demographics such as minorities. He is representing his state well while also proposing legislation to help clean up the culture of corruption in Washington D.C. HHe is a less controversial progressive than Storm and is undoubtedly positioning himself well as a surrogate and potential party leader for 2018 and 2020.

 

 

Jackson Clay (Democrat - Indiana)

Approval: 50%

Disapproval: 43%

Undecided: 7%

 

Analysis: Jackson Clay is now, without the question, the most powerful Blue Dog in D.C. With Marc Baudin's nomination barely scrapping by to become vice president, it now leaves the Indiana Senator as the main and lone voice of the moderate Democrats. Senate Minority Leader Clay has voted in line with the party's interests and kept his own position safe. While Indiana remains a right leaning state, they are impressed and cautiously satisfied with Senator Clay for the time being. 


 


 

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Approval Ratings, Republicans

(PM me if I overlooked your character)

 

Diego Zamora (Republican - New Mexico)

Approval: 51%

Disapproval: 40%

Undecided: 9%

Analysis: When you’re a Republican in a blue-state, what do you have to do to remain relevant? Strike deals and appear reasonable. And Senator Zamora has clearly distinguished himself capable of working with even the most liberal of Senators (Osiris Storm. While he is no longer Senate Majority Leader, Zamora’s stature and respect in his homestate has in fact elevated thanks to his new freedom to negotiate and work across the aisle.

 

George Maynard (Republican - North Dakota)

Approval: 54%

Disapproval: 39%

Undecided: 7%

Analysis: Republicans love him, Democrats hate him. Whether it be his bold unabashed defense of North Dakota's fossil fuel industry or his ridicule of the SCOTUS decision to legalize same-sex marriage, George Maynard has clearly made himself into the most prominent conservative right now in the Republican caucus. What's more though, he is catering well to his constituency. The Keystone Pipeline bill is important and well liked by North Dakota voters. However, he does need to do a better job with his press office or it may negatively affect turnout and enthusiasm come the midterms. And it wasn't too long ago that North Dakota, at least in midterm elections, was a blue state. 

 

John Saunders (Republican - Texas)

Approval: 51%

Disapproval: 43%

Undecided: 6%

Analysis: Saunders is winning over the right wing demographic of Texas politics with ease. However, his popularity among moderates and even some center-right Republicans has slid a bit in light of perceived partisanship. In light of shifting demographics in Texas, it would help Saunders to reach across the aisle once or twice to help keep the more moderate Republicans in his camp. That’s all he really needs to do to guarantee reelection in a state like Texas that remains a red bastion.

 

 

Grayson Kahuhu (Republican - Idaho)

Approval: 49%

Disapproval: 32%

Undecided: 19%

 

Analysis: Kahuhu has proposed many highly noncontroversial bills. While this definitely establishes goodwill, it does not ultimately shift the heavy chips on the table in your favor. The Senator did propose a bill banning abortion in the second trimester. These are the types of bills that will appeal to the highly important conservative base in Idaho. Kahuhu should make use of the luxury of being able to be boldly conservative, something other Republicans in bluer states like New Mexico can’t quite do.

 

 

Rick Prescott (Republican - New Hampshire)

Approval: 47%

Disapproval: 43%

Undecided: 10%

 

Analysis: Senator Prescott is a promising young politician, but he needs to keep his voting record updated. Overall, the people of New Hampshire are pleased for the most part with his voting patterns, but do wish he could follow more in the mold of Senator Zamora in delivering on bipartisan legislation designed to better cater to their needs. Overall, a good start.

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