Campaigns and Elections,Edge Messaging,Public Policy

MU Law Poll Analysis

18 Sep , 2018  

It is not time to panic, but don’t kid yourself, all is not well.


Parental obligations and client meetings this afternoon preclude me from the usual Marquette University rapid reaction video.  But after getting grief from folks (who knew you cared?), I will take a minute to offer a brief perspective on the results.

Biggest takeaway is that while Republicans should not panic, many need to adapt and overcome. Three big things: 1, the Right Direction/Wrong Track numbers have a bad trajectory 2, there is a growing enthusiasm gap with Democrats more jazzed about the election than GOPers. And, 3, Despite six months of record unemployment in Wisconsin and a whole host of other good news, the mood of the electorate here is mirroring that of the national polls. That is, the traditional mid-term hangover for the party in power has emerged.

The question remains, of course, will things get better or worse over the next 49 days.

Leah Vukmir is clearly feeling the after effects of a bruising primary, one that pushed her so far to the right it pushed moderates and independents into Baldwin’s camp. The National Club For Growth strikes again!

Governor Walker, as he himself predicted, is now behind Evers. The Evers campaign received a post-primary boost and the Governor is suffering the triple whammy of mid-term funk, voters having 2-term incumbent fatigue, and a complacency that often accompanies prosperity (The public doesn’t clamor for tax cuts when the economy is booming; in fact, they are more willing to tolerate the increased social services spending that Democrats promise).

Polls are only a snapshot in time and a lot can happen in 49 days. But there isn’t a moment to waste, it is time kick it into gear.  However, the problem with bad poll numbers is that they can impact donor and grassroots enthusiasm. Republicans up and down the ballot need to prevent that, first and foremost.

And, a bit about the President. This poll is not all about him. Generally, President Trump’s positives do not seep down the ballot, but his negatives always have. That has never been so evident in Wisconsin as it is in this poll. His unpopularity with college educated white women and independents is really hurting both Vukmir and Walker. (And, I suspect legislative Republicans may be seeing the same impact on their polling, by the way). No candidate will write off that demographic, and they do have good things to talk to them about, if they so choose. They need to!

In fact, in many policy areas the GOP candidates have great stories to tell all of Wisconsin. They need to find the right storytellers, and the undecided / leaning ears willing to give them a listen.

The Wisconsin GOP’s fate is in their own hands. They are not tied to the fortunes or misfortunes of President Trump. But the grassroots and the donors need to step up. As do the candidates. County party and regional offices need to start humming 14 hours a day. Callers need to call. Lit droppers need to drop. Donors need to donate. Leaders need to lead. It’s going to be a grind. So be it.

Oh, as for my client Brad Schimel? Well, his take on his favorable numbers can be found, here.
MU Law School Poll September results, here.

Campaigns and Elections

EdgeCast 08-22-18 – Marquette University Law School Poll

22 Aug , 2018  

Brian and Dan discuss the latest Marquette University Law School Poll results.


Edgecast-08-22-18 from Edge Messaging on Vimeo.

Campaigns and Elections,Edge Messaging,Podcast,Public Policy

What we learned from the July Marquette University Law School Poll?

18 Jul , 2018  

Dan Deibert and I discuss the findings from the latest Marquette University Law School Poll, which were released this afternoon.



Here are the top-line numbers. The cross tabs can be found here.

This will be the last poll before the primary, which is less than 4 weeks away (August 14).



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Campaigns and Elections

Analyzing the June 2018 MU Law School Poll

20 Jun , 2018  

The latest Marquette University Law School Poll is out, and we’re talking numbers, trends and outliers in this quick video podcast. Talk of a Blue Wave hitting Wisconsin is a bit premature, and while results of this poll are mixed, overall both Scott Walker and Tammy Baldwin have more reasons to like them than fear them. Details, here:

EdgeCast 06.20.18 Marquette Law School Poll Results from Edge Messaging on Vimeo.


Click here for the top-line results.

Here are the cross tabs.

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Campaigns and Elections,Dailytakes On Air,Fraley

Previewing the MU Law Poll

20 Jun , 2018  

Steve Scafiddi had me on his morning show today on 620 WTMJ to discuss the upcoming release of a new MU Law School Poll later today. Listen to the whole segment when you click below.




Campaigns and Elections

Baldwin focuses while GOP opponents squabble

7 May , 2018   Video

While the GOP Senate candidates and their teams are busy squabbling (online and in the press) over what a “true conservative” is, the incumbent Democrat is talking about key issues that matter to 100% of the state’s voters.

Quibble if you think she’s ignoring her own problems on this issue while exploiting a personal situation for political gain if you want, but you can’t deny two things. 1) She’s reaching out and delivering her message to a wider audience than the GOP candidates are; and, 2) This is a powerful ad.

I’ve worked against and voted against Tammy Baldwin since she first ran for local government in Madison. But you can’t deny she’s a savvy campaigner who is almost always on message.


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Campaigns and Elections,Dailytakes On Air,Fraley

Paul Ryan’s Not Running

11 Apr , 2018  

By now you’ve no doubt heard the news that Speaker Paul Ryan has announced he will not be seeking re-election this fall, saying he would like to spend more time being a husband and father. WTMJ 620’s Steve Scafiddi called me today to get my take on the whole thing. You can listen to the segment below.

Campaigns and Elections,Dailytakes On Air,Fraley

Up Front With Mike Gousha

2 Apr , 2018  

I had the pleasure of joining Mike Gousha on his weekend political show, Up Front, to discuss the state supreme court race.

Watch the episode here. 

Campaigns and Elections,Edge Messaging,Public Policy

Breaking Down the Latest MU Law Poll

5 Mar , 2018  

The new Marquette University Law School poll out today had some interesting results. I broke it all down during a Facebook Live including the findings on Foxconn, President Trump, Governor Walker, Senator Baldwin and more.


Campaigns and Elections,Podcast

Analyzing the US Senate Race

27 Feb , 2018  

Lisa Manna interviewed me for our latest EdgeCast about Sen. Tammy Baldwin releasing two new ads today. We break down the ads, including the overall messaging strategy of the incumbent Democrat as we forecast the next few months of the race.