As the campaign season enters its endgame (thank goodness), Bill Brady has a steady lead in the race for governor, according to surveys from three major outlets. The Senate race? Well, you wouldn’t want to bet a nickel on Mark Kirk or Alexi Giannoulias.
Here is how the major races stand, with eight weeks to go until the general election. We’ve included results from the Chicago Tribune/WGN, Rasmussen Reports, and Public Policy Polling. We’ve also included the analysis of fivethirtyeight.com, the political projection website of former Chicagoan Nate Silver.
-- Chicago Tribune/WGN (Sept. 1): Giannoulias 34, Kirk 34, Jones 6
-- Rasmussen Reports (Aug. 25): Giannoulias 42, Kirk 40
-- Public Policy Polling (Aug. 15): Giannoulias 37, Kirk 35
-- fivethirtyeight.com: Projects Giannoulias will receive 48.8% of the vote, Kirk 48.3%. Gives Giannoulias a 53.1% chance of winning the election.
-- Chicago Tribune/WGN (Sept. 1): Brady 37, Quinn 32, Cohen 4, Whitney 2
-- Rasmussen Reports (Aug. 23): Brady 46, Quinn 37
-- Public Policy Polling (Aug. 15): Brady 39, Quinn 30, Whitney 11
-- fivethirtyeight.com: Projects Brady will receive 51.5% of the vote, Quinn 44%. Gives Brady an 86.7% chance of winning.
Even worse for Quinn, the Tribune poll found he has an approval rating of 28%, with a disapproval rating of 50%. It’s hard to get a majority of votes when a majority of voters don’t like the job you’re doing. In the Senate race, the bright spot for Kirk is that 25% of voters have a favorable opinion of him, while only 19% have an unfavorable opinion. Giannoulias’s favorable/unfavorable was 22% to 28%.
With both candidates in both races polling under 40% in some polls, the one safe prediction is that nobody’s going to “win” these elections, in the sense of receiving the voters’ support and approval. Someone’s not going to lose. Someone we’re going to have to live with for the next four or six years.