* I talked to subscribers about this topic earlier in the week, but it’s why everybody should take Scott Lee Cohen a whole lot more seriously than they are, including pollsters, who haven’t put his name on the candidate list…
Part of Mr. Cohen’s strategy is to appeal to African-Americans, who generally vote overwhelmingly for Democrats.
“If he starts making inroads among blacks…that’s just a nightmare” for Gov. Quinn, said Kent Redfield, a political scientist at the University of Illinois, Springfield. […]
Paul Green, director of the Roosevelt University School of Policy Studies in Chicago, said Mr. Cohen was “an unguided political missile.” But with both major party candidates “running such weak campaigns, if he spends the money he could make a splash,” Mr. Green said.
During a recent campaign stop in Chicago, Mr. Cohen bought breakfast for 30 African-American ministers and told them Democrats had taken their support for granted. Mr. Cohen supports proposals to bring more Wal-Mart Stores Inc. outlets and manufacturing jobs to black neighborhoods. “Give me a chance,” he told the ministers.
Pastor Andre Smith of First Bethel Church said he was impressed. “I believe everybody should get a second chance,” he said.
Gov. Pat Quinn’s numbers with African-Americans are flat-out horrible. Yes, African-Americans always break late, but these numbers are pretty unprecedented. The Public Policy Polling survey had Quinn at just 41 percent among blacks, with 44 percent undecided. The Rasmussen poll’s crosstabs were even weirder…
In the August edition of [the Illinois Chambers’] campaign-related newsletter, The Political Upside, the headline of an item about a recent Rasmussen poll was that the “crosstabs,” specific details about certain groups, “chew into Brady’s 13 point lead over Quinn.”
In the Rasmussen poll, the crosstabs illustrated a surprising amount of black support — 30 percent — for Brady, the newsletter states.
“Illinois Chamber sources believe that this particular demographic’s 30 percent level of support for an Illinois Republican is extraordinarily high and that in reality Brady’s lead hovers around the 5-6 percent range,” the newsletter said. The poll, which surveyed 750 likely voters Aug. 9, had Brady at 48 percent, Gov. Pat Quinn at 35 percent, with the rest for another candidate or undecided.
Rasmussen had Quinn getting 44 percent among blacks - very similar to the PPP poll. 8 percent were with “some other candidate” and 18 percent were undecided.
Despite the Chamber’s analysis, I don’t think this race is as close as they believe. Scott Lee Cohen is a big reason for that, as is, to a lesser extent, Rich Whitney. We’ll see.
By the way, Alexi Giannoulias’ numbers among African-American voters follow the more traditional lines. According to PPP, he’s getting 69 percent, with 22 percent undecided and 9 for Republican Mark Kirk.
* In other campaign news, Democrat Debbie Halvorson has fired her campaign manager…
Halvorson (D-Crete) decided this week to replace Travis Worl, who had worked on Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign, in favor of someone else, spokesman Ryan Vanderbilt said. Halvorson has not yet hired a new campaign manager.
“Travis is no longer with our campaign,” Vanderbilt said. “He did a good job getting everything up and running to put us in a position to win going into November. But now, as we look forward to the election and Labor Day, a decision was made to bring in someone new.”
Halvorson, who is nearing the end of her first term in Congress, is facing Republican Adam Kinzinger in the Nov. 2 election.
Worl did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
Worl made news earlier this summer after questioning in an e-mail whether Kinzinger had exaggerated his role as a temporary U.S. Air Force Special Operations pilot. A member of the Wisconsin National Guard, Kinzinger has flown more than 100 special operations missions and Halvorson’s campaign focused on his use of “is” versus “was” on a Web site to describe his special forces status.
They fired the guy with no replacement in mind just before Labor Day? Man, there’s trouble in that camp.
* More campaign news…
* Schoenburg: Taxpayer-funded Schock mailing pushes envelope
* Schilling seeks debates with Hare
* Quinn comes out against mosque at Ground Zero
* Quinn doesn’t support mosque near ground zero
* SJ-R: Voters need budget details — and soon