#NCSEN: Polls, Polls, Polls and Polls.

kaytomTillis campaign pollster Glen Bolger, whose firm is known by the unfortunate acronym POS, has released a poll showing the 2014 US Senate race all knotted up at 44 percent apiece.  Libertarian Sean Haugh is pulling 8 percent of the vote, with 4 percent undecided.  The Washington Examiner’s David Drucker raised an interesting point about Bolger’s poll: 

[…]Republicans generally hold the voter turnout advantage in midterm elections and they are favored to gain congressional seats Nov. 4.

 But Bolger’s memo on this poll revealed that he used a demographic sample that tracks closely with turnout in the 2012 presidential election, when President Obama narrowly lost North Carolina to GOP nominee Mitt Romney after narrowly winning the state in 2008.[…] 

Does ANYBODY seriously expect turnout this November to match or exceed 2012?  You had a presidential race and gubernatorial race that year.  (In 2012, four million fewer Republican voters showed up for Romney than for McCain in 2008.)  I don’t see anything out there right now firing up the masses to turn out and send Thom Tillis to Washington.  Sure, there are plenty of people who think Kay Hagan is weird and believe Barry Obama is evil.  But WILL THAT be enough to rally the troops around the man from Cornelius and carry him to victory?   MORE: 

[…] Respondents in the Tillis poll were 72 percent white, 21 percent African-American and 7 percent “other minorities,” and 32 percent Republican and 41 percent Democrat. By comparison, in 2012 exit polls, voters were 70 percent white and 23 percent African-American and 33 percent Republican and 39 percent Democrat.

In the 2012 election cycle, many Republican campaigns were surprised on Election Day when Democratic congressional candidates performed better than GOP polls had suggested was likely. The Democrats gained two Senate seats, winning tough races in Republican-leaning states like North Dakota, where Obama was trounced by Romney.SeanHaugh

The Tillis survey suggests a challenging environment for Hagan, even as she continues to do better than many predicted. Her biggest problem? According to this poll, it’s Obama. […]

The Bolger survey was conducted Sept. 2 – 4.   Tillis and Hagan debated the evening of September 3.  Bolger finds a 41/47 favorable-unfavorable rating for Hagan.  Tillis pulls a 33/37 favorable-unfavorable rating.

Jim Hunt got elected governor of North Carolina in 1980 while Ronald Reagan was beating the living daylights out of Jimmy Carter.  Mike Easley won two terms as governor as George Bush was winning North Carolina and the presidency in 2000 and 2004.  Republican Lauch Faircloth knocked off Democrat incumbent senator Terry Sanford as Bill Clinton was toppling George HW Bush in 1992. The D or the R isn’t necessarily going to carry you across the finish line.  A national leader’s popularity or unpopularity isn’t always a factor in Tar Heel State elections.  Sometimes, you have to put something more out there. 

The CBS News / New York Times / YouGov Battleground Tracking Poll also has new numbers on the North Carolina race.  They show Tillis at 41, Hagan at 39 and Haugh at 5 percent.  Margin or error is at 3 percent.  The poll was conducted between August 18 and September 2.  Again, the two candidates participated in a televised debate on September 3.