Political Insiders Feeling Good About Their Candidates

In final Patch survey of influencers, Republicans predict a close race in Wisconsin, while Democrats seem sure of Obama’s victory here.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Patch’s final survey of Wisconsin political insiders reveals that party influencers believe the presidential candidates they support will previal in Wisconsin and nationwide in Tuesday's election.

However, Democrats insiders seem a bit more confident that President Barack Obama will take Wisconsin, while Republicans are projecting a close race with Mitt Romney ultimately winning, with many saying polls that show Obama in the lead will be proven wrong.

As it has throughout the campaign, Patch sent its "Blue Wisconsin" and "Red Wisconsin" surveys to more than 150 activists and insiders of both parties, and 60 and 40 Democrats participated in this survey.

Most Republican insiders — 70 percent — predicted that Romney will win Wisconsin. Fifteen percent of GOP respondents said Obama would win Tuesday. When it comes to who will win the election, 88 percent picked Romney.

“For the first time in history, the conservative base is organized, not merely motivated. I expect similar returns and turnout as 2008, but in Romney’s favor this time,” wrote one Republican insider.

Republicans call for a close race here

Republican respondents predict a close race in Wisconsin, with one-third saying Romney will carry Wisconsin by less than 3 percentage points and 13 percent saying the race was too close to call. Twenty-eight percent of those surveyed said Romney will win Wisconsin by 3 to 5 percentage points, while 10 percent believe he'll take the state by more than 5 points.

Nine Republicans, or 15 percent, said they think Obama will win Wisconsin and three people, or 5 percent, think he will win the national popular vote.

Poll predictions doubted

Republican insiders said they were skeptical of recent polls that show Obama in the lead, saying that Republican energy and turnout for the election is being underestimated, nationally and Wisconsin. Of 21 polls taken in Wisconsin since September, Obama has led in 19 of them, while two have shown the two candidates tied.

In Wisconsin, because of their success in the recall election, “Republicans will be out in droves – they are motivated and they smell success,” wrote one Republican respondent.

“The Republicans will win larger percentages than the talking heads are forecasting. This is because the Republicans are much more enthusiastic than the Democrats,” another insider said.

Democrats convinced of Obama’s success

Democratic respondents are a bit more confident their candidate will prevail in Wisconsin, according to Patch's survey results.

Among Democrats, 95 percent said they think Obama will win Wisconsin and only two, or 5 percent, said the race was too close to call.

The majority of Democrats, 78 percent,  responded that they thought Obama would win Wisconsin by 3 or more percentage points, and 18 percent seeing Obama winning by 5 points or more.

“In every presidential election since the landslide of 1984, Wisconsin has voted Democratic and this year shall be no different,” wrote one Democrat.

For the national popular vote, Democrats aren’t as certain.

Although 92 percent predict Obama will win the national popular vote, they predict a closer race: 37 percent, predict that Obama will win the national popular vote by less than 3 percentage points, while 53 percent think Obama will win by 3 or more points.

Other survey results also broke down along party lines:

  • 93 percent of Democrats said Obama had the better "ground game" during the campaign, while 93 percent of Republicans said it was Romney.
  • 73 percent of Democrats said Obama had run a better advertising campaign, while 60 percent of Republicans said the same of Romney.
  • When asked what was most key to winning Wisconsin, 70 of Democrats said it was turning out the Democratic base; 30 percent said it was convicting undecided voters to vote for Obama.
  • When Republicans were asked the same question, 60 percent turning out the GOP base was most important, and 40 percent said convincing undecideds to vote for Romney.

Tammy vs. Tommy

The Patch survey also asked the insiders about the close U.S. Senate race between U.S. Rep. Tammy Baldwin and former Gov. Tommy Thompson.

Among Democrats, 88 percent predicted Baldwin would win, with 12 percent saying the race was too close to call. The results were almost identical on the other side, witih 87 percent of Republicans saying Thompson would take the race, and 10 pecent saying it was too close to call. Three percent (two people) predicted a Baldwin victory.

Eighty percent of the Democrats surveyed said the turnout in the presidential race will result in more votes for Baldwin, while 42 percent said it would benefit Thompson.

Some common ground

Despite their differences, Patch’s political insiders may have found common ground on two points about this election.

Respondents on both sides of the aisle predict a delay in finding out definitive results for the election.

“Odds are that we still won’t know who the president will be on Wednesday morning,” wrote one Republican polled.

“Likely we won’t know the final presidential results for some time,” wrote a Democratic respondent.

Also, whatever political differences divide them, Republican and Democrats alike are looking forward to the end of an end to what they called an exhausting and negative election cycle.

“I’ll be glad when it’s over. I’m exhausted,” wrote one respondent.

“Hallelujah and pass the gin! I’ve lived through another one,” wrote another.

Patch's Red Wisconsin Survey participants are:

Jim  Bender, president of School Choice Wisconsin, former chief of staff for Assembly Republican Leader Jeff Fitzgerald; Bill Berdan, first vice chairman, Wauwatosa Republicans; Keith  Best, public relations chairman for Waukesha County Republicans;  Bob Bradley, party activist; Charles Brey, field director for state Assembly candidate Tracy Herron; Tracy Brodd, Republican campaign worker; Paul  Bucher, former Waukesha County district attorney and candidate for Wisconsin attorney general; Roy Catron, Tea Party activist; Andrew Cegielski, former Milwaukee County Board candidate; Sara Conrad, party activist; Bill Cosh, spokesman for the state Department of Natural Resources; Michael Crowley, Waukesha County supervisor; Jake Curtis, former state Assembly candidate; Lou D'Abbraccio, board member, Racine County Republican Party;  Brian Dey, Racine County Tea Party member; Fred Dooley, conservative blogger; Steven Duckhorn, former Republican candidate for Milwaukee County sheriff; Bill Folk, chairman of Racine County Republican Party;Elisabeth Friesen, Republican activist; Jesse Garza, chairman, St. Croix County Republican Party; Mark Green, senior director of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, former U.S. ambassador to Tanzania and former congressman; Chris Haines, longtime campaign volunteer and former GOP campaign manager; Deb Hawley Jordahl, conservative strategist and consultant; John Hiller, co-chair of Scott Walker's transition team as governor; Sandra Hollander,  member of Mitt Romney's  “Juntos con Romney” leadership team; Ethan Hollenberger, former chairman of the College Republicans at Marquette University and staff member on several legislative campaigns; Mark Honadel, state reprsentative, 21st District; Marguerite Ingold, party activist; Valerie Johnson, former GOP fundraiser and staffer for various campaigns; Thomas J. Keeley, political consultant; Scott Kelly, communications director for former state Sen. Van Wanggaard; Cindy Kilkenny, conservative blogger; Rik Kluessendorf, attorney and former state Assembly candidate; Dan Knodl, state representative, 24th District; Tif Koehler, campaign volunteer and civic leader; Johnny Koremenos, regional field director for Tommy Thompson campaign; Gordon Lang, member of North Shore Republicans; Chris Larsen, trustee in Village of Sturtevant Trustee; Noelle Lorraine, field coordinator for Americans for Prosperity; John P. Macy, first vice chairman of Waukesha County Republican Party; Kathleen Madden, Waukesha County Clerk of Circuit Court; Ginny Marschman, party activist; Jessica McBride, conservative columnist; Bill McCoshen political consultant and; former cabinet secretary for Gov. Tommy Thompson; Joe Medina, party activist; Randy Melchert, field director for Mark Neumann's campaign; Gerald Mellone, Brookfield alderman; Ryan Morgan, conservative blogger; Dean Munday, conservative blogger; Mark Neumann, U.S. Senate candidate and former congressman; Kelly O'Brien, founder of Shorewood Citizens for Responsible Government; Eric Wm. Olsen, conservative activist; Nick Oliver, state Assembly candidate, 22nd District; Victoria Ostry, treasurer of the Wisconsin Federation of Republican Women.; Rick Owen, Brookfield alderman; Monnine  Parnitzke, party activist; Steve Ponto, mayor of Brookfield; Don Pridemore, state representative, 99th District; Paris Procopis, grassroots activist; Jim  Pugh, director of public relations and issue management for Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce; Denise Rate, Tea Party member; Bob Reddin, Brookfield alderman and executive director, Jobs First Coalition; Pam Reeves, treasurer, Waukesha County Republicans;  Joe Rice, former county supervisor and member of North Shore Republicans Executive Committee; Nate Ristow, candidate for 13th District State Assembly; Brandon Rosner, Wisconsin Republican consultant;  Bill Savage, aide to state Rep. Don Pridemore and  officer of Menomonee Falls Taxpayers Association; Jim  Schaefer, Muskego-Norway School Board president; Josh Schimek, conservative blogger; JB Schmidt, conservative blogger; Christian Schneider, senior fellow at Wisconsin Policy Research Institute and former policy analyst for Wisconsin State Legislature; Ashley Schultz, state director of the Recall Action Fund;  Nick Schweitzer, Libertarian pundit and blogger; Tim Schwister, former State Assembly candidate; Dan Sebring, vice chairman, Milwaukee County Republicans and candidate for 4th Congressional District; Cathy Stepp, Wisconsin Natural Resources secretary and former state senator; Jeff Stone, state representative, 82nd District; Jonathan Strasburg, attorney; Dave  Swarthout, board member, 1st Congressional District Republicans; Charles Sykes, conservative talk show host for WTMJ Radio;  Steve Taylor, Milwaukee County supervisor; Jenny Toftness, executive director of the Republican Assembly Campaign Committee; Greg Torres, Jefferson County supervisor; Jim  Villa, former chief of staff to County Executive Scott Walker and Alberta Darling; current CEO of Commercial Association of REALTORS® Wisconsin; Robin Vos, state representative; 63rd District; Dan Vrakas, Waukesha County Executive; Yash Wadhwa, former State Assembly candidate; Jeff Wagner, conservative talk show host, WTMJ Radio; Tom Weatherston, candidate for 62nd Assembly District and Village of Caledonia trustee; Steve Welcenbach, head of the Menomonee Falls Taxpayers Association and Tea Party activist; Todd Welch, Wisconsin state coordinator at Campaign for Liberty; James Wigderson, conservative blogger and columnist for Waukesha Freeman; Eddie Willing, conservative columnist in Racine County and executive director ofFoundersIntent.org; Chris Wright, Sturtevant village trustee and former candidate for State Assembly; Phil Ziegler, CEO of InPro Inc. and party activist.


Patch's Blue Wisconsin Survey participants are:

Kelley Albrecht, candidate for 63rd State Assembly District; Mandela Barnes, candidate for 11th State Assembly District; Ron Biendseil, vice chair for membership, Dane County Democratic Party; Tammy Bockhorst, membership secretary/membership chair, Milwaukee County Democratic Party; Randy Bryce, candidate for 62nd State Assembly District; Brian Carlson, liberal blogger; Sachin Chheda, chair, Milwaukee County Democratic Party; Jeff Christensen, chair, 5th Congressional District Democrats; Mark Conforti, chief negotiator for the Fox Point-Bayside Teachers Association; Rick Congdon, former judge and former chair, Democratic Party of Waukesha County; Deb Dassow, progressive and labor activist, and semi-retired educator; Victor Drover, liberal blogger; Dale Dulberger, party activist; Perry Duman, candidate for the 60th State Assembly District; Brett Eckstein, Democratic attorney; Waring R. Fincke, vice chair, Washington County Democratic Party; Stephanie Findley, chair, 4th Congressional District Democrats; Kelly Gallaher, founding member, Community for Change; Heather Geyer, liberal columnist; Ginny Goode, Grassroots North Shore; Darcy Gustavsson, party activist; Kristin Hansen, neighborhood team leader, Obama for America and co-host, Drinking Liberally Waukesha; Robert Hansen, co-chair of Progressive Democrats of America in Milwaukee County; John Heckenlively, secretary, 1st Congressional District Democrats; Kelly Herda, treasurer, Democratic Party of Wisconsin Women's Caucus and political consultant; Robert Heule, Region 5 Chair, Democratic Party of Milwaukee County; Peter Knudsen, legislative aide and longtime Democratic staffer; Marga Krumins, candidate for 97th State Assembly District and associate chair Democratic Party of Wisconsin Women’s Caucus; Bill Kurtz, candidate for 21st Assembly District; John Lehman, state senator, 21st District; Matthew Lowe, youth outreach director, Waukesha County Democratic Party; Fran Martin, election observer for the Democratic Party and appeared in Wangaard recall ads; Tom Michalski, Oak Creek alderman; Bridget Moen, chair, Democratic Party of Ozaukee County; Meg Moen, treasure, Democratic Party of Ozaukee County; Rick Moze, party activist; Lisa Mux liberal blogger, and co-founder and co-host of Drinking Liberally Waukesha; Thad Nation, political consultant and former aide to Gov. Jim Doyle; Larry Nelson, former Waukesha mayor, current County Board supervisor and delegate to Democratic National Convention; Jason Patzfahl, liberal blogger and founding member of the Progressive 28th Political Action Committee; Jeffrey Perzan , attorney and party activist; Colin Plese, Shorewood School Board member; John Pokrandt, candidate for 13th State Assembly District; Steven Potter, communications aide, state Democratic Party; Jason Rae, Democratic National Committee member; Aaron Robertson, party activist; Chris Rockwood, candidate for 14th State Assembly District; Kristopher Rowe, party activist; Keith Schmitz, member, State Democratic Platform Committee and founding member, Grassroots North Shore; Richard Schwalb, party activist; Erin Sievert, chairwoman, Jefferson County Democrats; Kathleen Slamka, party activist; Eilene Stevens, party activist; Mike Tate, chair , Democratic Party of Wisconsin; Melissa Ugland, business owner and party activist; Sarah Wagner, community activist for Wisconsin Jobs Now; Jamie Wall, candidate for 8th Congressional District; Jim Ward, candidate, 28th State Senate District; Jane Witt, chair of Racine County Democrats; and Graeme Zielinski, communications director, Wisconsin Democratic Party.

Craig November 06, 2012 at 06:10 PM
Troy: I have. It scares me to think about it, will it take us past the point of recovering? IDK, but I also worry regardless of who wins, it may be too late. I am not trying to get all 'doom and gloom', but has anyone else felt that it may be too late for the USA to once again become an economic superpower?
FreeThought Troy November 06, 2012 at 06:14 PM
Upity http://www.theatlanticwire.com/politics/2011/11/yep-uppity-racist/45321/ Ghetto: http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/citydesk/2009/08/27/ghetto-just-what-do-you-mean-by-that/ Helps when you know what the common meaning of things are when in discussion. In your world it may be ok. In the real world, it's not.
FreeThought Troy November 06, 2012 at 06:17 PM
I have felt that way for a while, now, Craig. Ever since the Debt Ceiling debacle and the credit downgrade. Where do we go from here? Is it so bad we are no longer on top of the world? Considering the alternative seems to point to China, I would agree it is a bad thing. A very bad thing.
Brian Dey November 06, 2012 at 06:25 PM
FTT- Under Lilly ledbetter, she was already not limited by statute and that was ner her argument, and in fact, she said she knew of the discrimination long before her filing. http://blog.heritage.org/2012/10/19/president-obamas-misleading-account-of-lilly-ledbetter-equal-pay-case/ And about Obamacare, Newland v. Sebalius proved that Obamacare violated first amendment rights by mandating that insurance must have abortion coverage, sterilization and contraceptives. The court rightly ruled in favor of Newland, who owned a family-owned business with high Catholic beliefs. There are other such lawsuits as well. It is your right to have an abortion, sterilization or use contraceptives. It is no one else's responsibility to pay for it but you. So that was obviously trying to take freedom away by Obama.
Michael McClusky November 06, 2012 at 06:34 PM
@Hoffa Is there a state statute on the books that gives the right to our citizens to extradite all Bear fans from the State of Wisconsin? If not, what legal challenges would we face if Madison enacted such a law? I cannot see any reasonable objections from anyone in Wisconsin, that is for sure.
Captain Midnight November 06, 2012 at 06:45 PM
OK Amy, How long are you going to let these ignorant racists spew their garbage? The Patch is rapidly becoming a Reichwing Rag. Here is a video interview of some typical Romoney supporters who sound like the trolls on Patch: http://tinyurl.com/b5efblw
John Feia November 06, 2012 at 06:50 PM
The beauty is that although we may have differing opinions, we all have the same right. One vote. I just came back from the polling place with my wife and grand daughter. Three for the good guys! However you vote, nothing is more cool than seeing your grandchild vote for the first time!!!
James R Hoffa November 06, 2012 at 06:56 PM
@Feia - "Three for the good guys" - so you all voted Republican?
Greg November 06, 2012 at 06:56 PM
I just had a upstanding representative of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin stop in my office to remind us to vote. He gave me a card with a nice picture of what I assume are Democrats at a rally. The picture has two older women, one middle age man, one older man, one middle aged woman, a teen girl and some people in the background. ALL BLACK, no white people, no hispanic people, no asian people. This must be the party or racists, what about the rest of us?
Craig November 06, 2012 at 06:58 PM
John: Congrats! Let's hope your grand daughter has a better future ahead. That is something we all want, and something we all agree on.
James R Hoffa November 06, 2012 at 06:59 PM
@Captain Midnight - Will Minnesota's electoral votes be placed in the Romney/Ryan column tonight?
Greg November 06, 2012 at 07:05 PM
A scan of the card is in the picture section. Unlike Jason P. I don't just make this stuff up.
yomammy November 06, 2012 at 07:07 PM
careful- by noticing the picture facts, you will be labeld here by certain people...
yomammy November 06, 2012 at 07:10 PM
from captain "midnight"??!?! free thought and others may not like that word...and the "urban" definition of it...
Brian Dey November 06, 2012 at 07:13 PM
Captain Midnight comes to us from the Golden Valley area of Minnesota. Love how he talks about trolls, yet he/she is one. Nice try CM. Come play again when you have something intelligent to say.
yomammy November 06, 2012 at 07:15 PM
wow....i am with ya on this one john, freethought...
James R Hoffa November 06, 2012 at 07:18 PM
@FreeThought Troy - The discovery rule already applied to the application of the statute of limitations of the Equal Pay Act of 1964. The Lilly Ledbetter Act basically took the teeth out of the statute of limitations and the reasons behind it (to create an equal, fair, and reliable environment for litigation) - witnesses die or become unable to locate, memories fade, records get lost or misplaced, etc. The LLA was little more than a cheap political pander meant to attract easily influenced, and not very bright women to the Democratic Party political machine. Catholic institutions that employee people and offer health insurance as an employment benefit purchase group policies from outside private insurance providers. If Obamacare mandates that all policies offered by private insurance providers must cover the costs of contraceptive BC, then that's an additional expense that must be born by the the person/entity that is paying the policy premium - in your example, that entity would be the Catholic employer. Thus, Obamacare effectively forces the Catholic employer to pay the premium for a policy that covers contraceptive BC. This is fundamentally wrong and un-American. Nothing is preventing the woman from purchasing a supplemental policy to cover BC if she doesn't want to pay for her birth control cash-out-of-pocket - which would actually be the more economically beneficially way to pay for BC, as opposed to insurance. Get a clue already!
Greg November 06, 2012 at 07:22 PM
I did not say he was a Democrat. He did look like hell though.
Captain Midnight November 06, 2012 at 07:54 PM
The Patch will be a saner place for your leaving, NOB. Your case being "rested" the jury declares you to be a certified Ignoramus. @Hoffa, the votes of the enlightened State of Minnesota will comfortably be recorded in the Obama/Biden and Klobuchar columns. FYI I don't live in the Golden Valley area any longer. I read that patch to keep up with the neighborhood where I once lived; I have been a registered Wisconsin voter for five years. @yomammy -- if you don't know who Captain Midnight was that is your problem.
FreeThought Troy November 06, 2012 at 07:59 PM
CM - my parents live in MN. Yea it was the state of my birth. I know of Klobuchar. For the record, the woman is super duper cool and a credit to her state and the Senate.
FreeThought Troy November 06, 2012 at 08:01 PM
I agree, Craig. If there are any lessons to be learned from this election, no matter the winners, I hope we can all get to a place of rational discussion and cooperative measures. On both sides. I know I am partisian on the Patch, but I acknowledge both sides tend to have issues with this.
Satori November 06, 2012 at 08:22 PM
I wouldn't expect every Romney supporter that reads the OP to denounce it, but I'm surprised that those of you that practically live here (you know who you are) have nothing to say in effort to distance yourself from such blatant racism. We can only assume that you share these feelings.
Satori November 06, 2012 at 08:25 PM
I wouldn't expect every Romney supporter that reads the OP to denounce it, but I'm surprised that those of you that practically live here (you know who you are) have nothing to say in effort to distance yourself from such blatant racism. We can only assume that you share these feelings.
FreeThought Troy November 06, 2012 at 08:33 PM
Satori - as much as I can understand your position and the path that lead you here, I must come to the defence of most of the Conservatives on Patch. I have gotten into many positive, rational discussions with a great deal of people, here. Though we passionately disagree and argue, we pretty much stay cordial and I honestly believe they are good people who disagree with my opinions. Yes. There are a deal of folks whose racism boggles the mind. Esp. in 21st Century America. I honestly hold to the believe that the Conservates here on Patch chalk it up to the loons they portray themselves to be and don't even justify their rantings with responses. We Progressives always jump on them, but it is my honest opinion the Conservative just let them rant and continue with their rational points. For the most part with a few exeptions, a vast majority on Patch are good people.
Michael November 06, 2012 at 08:45 PM
keep telling yourself these things when you go to bed tonight knowing that the free world has a new leader in the morning
The Anti-Alinsky November 06, 2012 at 08:58 PM
John Feia wrote: "...Whatever the result, I hope that the Congress will work with the President to attempt to achieve some results which has been a very absent function the pats 4 years..." True John, B.O. has accomplished nothing these last four years. Which makes me ask the question...Why would you even consider voting for him again???
The Anti-Alinsky November 06, 2012 at 09:09 PM
FreeThoughtTroy wrote: "...Obama never touched your religious freedom. You are welcome to worship as you chose - tax exempt I may add. Catholic Institutions are not obligated to pay for birth control (BC). Insurance companies do in that circumstance..." BC=Birth Control. Apparently somewhere in Free's mind it makes sense to make an acronym out of everything. TJPS. Free, there are two flaws in your supposition. First, since the employer is paying for a large part of that insurance, they have a vested interest, and forcing them to pay for something that violates their beliefs is unconscionable. Second, there are many, many, many employers that self insure, giving them a larger control over the decision to offer something like birth control. Again, forcing them to do that is simply immoral, and likely violates the separation of church and state.
John Feia November 06, 2012 at 09:31 PM
@ Hoffa You crack me up!
John Feia November 06, 2012 at 09:36 PM
NObama 2012, Contributions like yours to any public forum will not be missed. Good riddance!
Joseph Robert November 07, 2012 at 02:13 PM
CONGRATULATIONS to all of the millions of smart people who voted for Obama-Biden!!!! We did it!!!!! We crushed extremism, racism, voter suppression, anonymous money, hatred of minorities -- with sound ideas, moderation and truth! wlslady and donnaw- Take a valium and stop your constant scare tactics, please. It didn't work for Karl Rove, the radical Koch Brothers and Mr. Adelson, and won't work for you, either. Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney can now go shopping for new shirts at COSTCO, and Mitt can work on his car elevator in La Jolla. LMAO. Yippee! Hopefully the country can now coalesce around OBAMA-BIDEN, and not work (like Sen. McConnell had done) mostly for the benefit of one party or another!!! Hoorah!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hoorah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We WON BIG-TIME!!!!!!!!!!!!!! U - S - A!! U-S-A!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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