Casey to Donors: Polls Have “Warning Signals”

Smith, left, and Casey

Most observers don’t consider PA’s Senate race among the most competitive in the country. But someone does take it seriously: Bob Casey. In a letter to prospective donors obtained by PoliticsPA, the Senator warned of Tom Smith’s personal wealth, and that recent polling shows the underside of his support.

“The good news is that all recent public polls have us up; some by just 7 percent, others as much as 20 percent. The not so good news is that all those polls have me at less than 50 percent – a real warning signal for incumbent candidates.”

He said Smith’s politics views on issues are identical to those of the man Casey beat in 2006: Rick Santorum.

“We hope when people do learn that he is a coal baron who is a climate change denier; a Tea Party group founder who is endorsed by Tea Party organizations; a supporter of plans that would end Medicare as we know it; and has opposed the Paycheck Fairness Act that would help close the pay gap between women and men – that they will find him too extreme to support,” Casey wrote.

But Casey acknowledged that Smith has a major advantage: “his own pocketbook.”

“He has made it clear that he intends to spend a significant portion of what some estimate is an over $50 million personal fortune.”

Casey has raised a little over $1 million each quarter since mid 2011, and will likely have around $6 million at the end of June.

Smith’s own fundraising strategy is as yet unclear. In a recent interview with Roll Call, Smith predict that his race will cost $20 million – but didn’t say how much of it he planned to contributed.

“In the very slight case that we can’t raise sufficient [funds], I will say this: That well of money is not near dry yet,” he said.

A former coal company owner, Smith’s net worth is estimated in the $60 to $70 million range. He spent over $5 million of his personal wealth to win the April primary, but has not indicated how much he will spend in the general.

It’s not uncommon for fundraising efforts – letters, calls, emails, etc – to hype the competitiveness of an election. But Smith Campaign Manager Jim Conroy said the letter goes beyond that.

“It’s very clear that Bob Casey is running scared and he has every reason to be, as polling shows how very shallow his support is,” Conroy said. “It should be no surprise that voters are prepared to reject a Senator who has voted repeatedly to increase spending, grow the debt, and done nothing to create jobs.”

The Casey doomsday scenario is this: the race goes under the national radar for months as Casey outpaces Smith in traditional fundraising. As a result, Casey has a hard time attracting attention from big donors and interest groups (and super PACs). Then, with little warning, Smith drops $10 million (or some other large amount) in the race with a month to go, GOP super PACs join in, and the Casey camp doesn’t have time to react.

“Bob Casey is taking this race very seriously,” said spokesman Larry Smar. “He has a strong record of being an independent voice for Pennsylvania families and fighting for Pennsylvania jobs, but Tom Smith has a personal fortune and his strong ties to the Tea Party could bring a lot of outside special interest money to the race just as it did with other Tea Party candidates in 2010.”

Here’s the full letter:

Casey FR Letter

June 22nd, 2012 | Posted in Front Page Stories, Senate, Top Stories | 17 Comments

17 thoughts on “Casey to Donors: Polls Have “Warning Signals””

  1. Ralph says:

    He makes me sick

  2. Johnny says:

    Bob Casey is a total simpleton who had no business running for elected office.He has been a taxpayer parasite for many years and is now addicted to living off of other’s hard work.When confronted by a CNS News reporter and asked a very straight-forward question,his response was,DUH,I DON’T KNOW.This individual is inept,incompetent,and an embarrassment to the state of Pennsylvania.

  3. Ralph says:

    Casey should ask acorn what they would do. Then talk to his daughters for their view.Bob Casey is a dog

  4. Sgt. KEN USAF says:

    Bob Casey is a senator from Pa. Wow he must be doing a great job for me to never have heard of him. You don’t think he won on his name. DO YOU?

  5. bobguzzardi says:

    Will Bob Casey be going to Democratic National Convention in Charlotte NC in September?

    “Does that mean that you stand with NC Chair David Parker, then?” http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0612/76966.html

    Crazy Conservatives are looking forward to the Tarheel Trainwreck http://michellemalkin.com/2012/06/22/tarheel-trainwreck-the-coming-dnc-disaster

    FYI the Democratic Party was the only party in American history to have a terrorist wing, the KKK, which was, like the Solid South, all Democrat. It was Dwight Eisenhower who enforced the law and integrated Little Rock in 1954, following the US Supreme Court decision, the first southern school desegregation in America. Until that time, Democratic laws coerced all citizens of the south with a racist mandate.

  6. bobguzzardi says:

    Bob Casey is a Tax Taker; Tom Smith is a Tax Maker.

    Bob Casey’s endless corporate and social justice welfare demonstrate a total unawareness of where money comes from and what raises our standard of living.

  7. Dan M says:

    Conservatives are Crazy, please name three positive things that Casey has done for the country or for Pennsylvania; ok two things. Positive means Obamacare and Stimulus I or II or II or IV or V or VI don’t count.

  8. Proudly Pro-Choice Democrat says:

    Casey=Smith on abortion and gay marriage. This one-trick pony of being a union guy does NOT cut it anymore. It is time for real democrats to stand up to the party elites in Washington and demand real Democrats to represent us! I will be writing in “No more fake Democrats” in Nov on my ballot to send a message. Maybe if tea party Smith wins, they will get the message.

  9. Fran Huber says:

    Santorum and Smith are not exactly alike. Casey is underestimating the amount of support Smith is getting from the “quiet sector” who put their money where their mouth is. What has Casey done for this state?

  10. Conservatives are Crazy says:

    Wow did last nights klan-rally….errrr….GOP State Committee meeting end early last night? Because this board is flooded with idiot conservatives. Senator Casey has done a fine job as Senator its too bad that folks on the other side like Pat Toomey have made the Senate an impotent legislative body through their unconstitutional use of the filibuster. Tom Smith is another conservative dope who would continue to trend because Conservatives are unpatriotic. Fortunately the good guys always win so President Obama ad Senator Casey will prevail which is good for America. Conservatives need to be kicked out of the country because they are UN-American.

  11. karen says:

    If Casey did not have his last name to disgrace, no one would even know we had two Senator’s representing us in Pa. Not only has he been MIA on his record but he has been hiding under the arm of Barack Obama. It is truly time for new leadership in Washington for Pa. Tom Smith is the RIGHT choice this time around.

  12. Sean C. Rafferty says:

    Casey has done nothing for Pennsylvania. His motto should be; “ask not what I can do for Pennsylvania, but what can Pennsylvania do for me.” Every time that I call his office, they are non-responsive. Casey is all about the giveaways, just like Obama. This nonsense has to end. Its about time we had some buisness leaders like Tom Smith in Washington. I KNOW that he will be 100% better then Casey.

  13. John says:

    Casey is married to Obama by being his most ardent supporter in PA, advocating for PA to vote for him over Hillary in 2008.

    He also won in the perfect storm in 2006, the year congress changed to solid democratic control. He has a 5+ year voting record and has overseen an economy that has gone straight to Hades after the democrats took control of congress after the 2006 election.

    His political voting record is progressive and that is not the political tenor of the Commonwealth. I am glad he has not only married Barack, but now wants to do so with Al Gore to complete his progressive credentials. The senator has solid progressive street cred.

  14. Fan says:

    Casey votes with Obama 97% and calls himself an ‘independent voice for Pennsylvania’? What does a ‘dependent voice’ look like, then?

  15. TeaPartyEqualsRationality says:

    Don’t get too excited David. Mitt Romney will be running for reelection in 2016.

  16. David Diano says:

    Casey gave me a great quip.. that if he was running against the actually Rick Santorum (rather than just a generic ideological clone), he’d have an additional $5 million in fundraising dollars.

    That’s what Rick is worth, at the state level, $5 million to his opponent. We can only hope that Rick is the GOP nominee in 2016, because that $5 million aversion would multiply considerably at the national level.

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