Tuesday, October 21, 2014

2014 VBM Returns through 10/20

Yesterday more Republican ballots were reported to the SOS than Democratic ballots. That’s very unusual for California, but more understandable when we realize that some counties report the VBM ballots that arrive daily, while others don’t. Neither Alameda nor Santa Clara counties reported ballots yesterday. Thus, Democratic leaning counties are at 6.3% of total VBMs returned, but Republican leaning counties are at 8.1%. That's a ratio that is higher than 2012. Of course some of the counties that didn't report today have no competitive races. In those districts, Republican and Democratic leaning counties reported.

CA-3: The VBM dropped for the second consecutive day. They were D+12 on Friday and are now D+8. I still don’t think that’s close enough for Dan Logue to win, because the VBM was D+5 in 2012 when Garamendi won comfortably. It’s certainly the right direction for Logue, however.

CA-7: The change was minor, from D+1.8 to D+1.6. Race definitely is a toss-up.

CA-10: We’re still lower on VBM in this district, but the new ballot batch has dropped the Democratic advantage from D+2 to D+1. There’s no reason to think Jeff Denham is in danger.

CA-16: VBM went from D+15 to D+17. A Republican can win in this district with a big Democratic turn out advantage but not in a race with an unknown Republican.

CA-21: This should blow anyone away. The city of Bakersfield reported a whole lot of Democratic ballots and this district went from D+5 to D+17. That’s right. So far 52% of the ballots are Democratic, compared to 35% of Republican ballots. In almost every other district, we’d throw dirt on the Republican, but not in the Central Valley. In 2012, the final turnout was 47.5%D/36.2%R and David Valadao won by 15.6%, while Barack Obama was winning by 11.1%. That means that Democrats in this district will vote Republican. Yet while Valadao might be okay this isn’t the sort of ratio he wants. I’m not ready to predict Amanda Renteria will win, or even be competitive, but the district bears watching.

CA-24: The district VBM returns went from R+2 to R+3. The VBM in 2012 was R+1 and Lois Capps won by 10. You be While I’m not willing to commit that Chris Mitchum will be competitive, we’re talking 29,029 ballots, which is probably around 15% of the total vote.

CA-26: The VBMs are moving in the right direction for Republican Jeff Gorell, from D+6 to D+5 to now D+4. I still maintain that he needs more Republicans to vote VBM to win.

CA-33: Like CA-24 this one continues to look weird. The Democratic VBM advantage dropped from D+3 to D+2. The VBM was D+11 in 2012 when Democrat Henry Waxman beat independent Bill Bloomfield by 8%. I still maintain that a Republican can’t win a district Barack Obama won 61%-37% but if Republicans turn out and Democrats don’t maybe I’ll be wrong.

CA-36: The good news for Republican Brian Nestande is that ballot returns are now R+2, up from R+1. In most districts that’d be enough for the district to be a toss-up. The VBM was R+4 in 2012. Either that was a fluke that Raul Ruiz won or a Republican needs to do better to win. That said, don’t discount Nestande winning.

CA-47: I haven’t talked about this district before because Democrat Alan Lowenthal won by 13% in 2012 and Republican Andy Whallon has raised $52,466 for the entire cycle. Lowenthal has only spent $406,903 for the entire cycle, however, and that’s very low for a sitting congressman. Linda Sanchez is in a neighboring non-competitive district and has spent $805,431. VBM returns are R+1, after being D+2 in 2012. Again, I don’t think this is a competitive district, but if Republican returns outpace Democratic returns… Nah… Probably still non-competitive. Keep watching though.

CA-52: VBMs are still R+10, although they went from R+9.6 to R+10.3. So Carl DeMaio continues to get Republican ballots returned at a strong pace. In most districts that many more Republican ballots would indicate an easy Republican win. In 2012, however, Republicans had a 6% VBM return lead and Scott Peters won narrowly. If this keeps up, however, DeMaio should win.

State Senate
SD-12: Moved from D+5 to D+7.

SD-14: These are the same ballots as CA-21, so there was a big Democratic surge here. The district is now D+24 in ballot returns. I don’t know what the breaking point is for Democrats to win in the Central Valley, but it’s got to be less than that. The primary was D+5.

SD-34: Drops from R+9 to R+8. Still good for the GOP.

AD-16: Returns go back to D+2 from D+3.

AD-32: This assembly district has the ballots from CA-21 and SD-14, there was a big jump here. It goes from D+8 to D+28. To give you an idea how big that is, CA-17 is the district where Democrats Mike Honda and Ro Khanna are facing off. That one is D+21. That said, there’s no way the VBMs stay like this.

AD-36: VBMs go from R+6 to R+9. That’s bad news for incumbent Steve Fox. As I mentioned yesterday, VBM was R+15 in 2012, so he may be okay.

AD-44: Returns went to D+1 from D+2.

AD-60: Returns went from R+8 to R+10. People don’t think it’ll be competitive and it looks like they’re right.

AD-65: Returns remain at R+9 but ticked up slightly from R+9.0 to R+9.3.

AD-66: Returns go to R+7 from R+6, a good sign for Republican David Hadley. They were R+1 in 2012 and even in the primary.

Source for all these great numbers

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