PA-Sen: Sabato Moves 2016 Race from “Toss-Up” to “Leans Republican”

Pat ToomeyForecasts frequently change, a day that is supposed to be rainy frequently turns out to be sunny. After an update to Sabato’s Crystal Ball ratings was published today, we can see political forecasts can shift as well.

Kyle Kondik, managing editor of the Crystal Ball, sees Toomey’s fortunes shifting.

“While Sen. Pat Toomey (R) only barely beat former Rep. Joe Sestak (D) in 2010, we think the race has developed in such a way that he merits a slight edge in our ratings: We’re moving Pennsylvania Senate to Leans Republican,” wrote Kondik.

Terry Madonna and Michael Young are quoted in this prediction with their analysis of Toomey’s personal style to be “neither confrontational nor provocative.”

“His mild mannered and low-key demeanor resonates well with the Pennsylvania electorate. Indeed, it is a style Republicans have won with for decades,” commented Madonna and Young.

While the Crystal Ball does not predict Toomey to beat himself, it does note that his withdrawal from sponsorship of a bill that would have delayed a train safety system after the Amtrak crash is an issue that Democrats could use against him. They categorize him as “significantly more conservative than a majority of his constituents.”

Finally, the report notes that Joe Sestak, Toomey’s likely competition, is hated by the national Democrats. While they will most likely push Montgomery County Commissioner Josh Shapiro to enter the race, it is likely that Sestak will be all they have.

Although they may not like him, Sestak could very well be the Democrats’ best option against Toomey, as he came close six years ago.

7 Responses

  1. https://www.politicspa.com/politically-uncorrected-toomey-at-the-gate/66236/#comments

    As I predicted 7 days ago…

    “It’s still early, but if this race continues along its current trajectory, the prognosticators will shift it from “Toss Up” to “Leans Rep” soon enough.

    Too much is being made of the Presidential year election turnout. To be sure, it’s a valid piece of the puzzle and weighs in the Democrats’ favor, but – as another commenter already pointed out – its didn’t save them in 1992 (Specter over Yeakel by 2 points), in 2000 (Santorum over Klink by 7 points), or in 2004 (Specter over Hoeffel by 11 points). Clinton, Gore and Kerry carried PA in those respective elections, which means you had upwards of 10% of the total electorate splitting their ticket to vote for the incumbent Republican Senator.

    If you accept that the Democrats’ prospects for unseating Toomey rest on keeping this ticket-splitting among Hillary voters to a minimum, then it follows that they need a nominee who will unite their party.

    To put it lightly, Sestak does not appear to fit that bill.”

  2. Toomy is Right!the good old boys should stop acting like adolescent mean girls and work on defeating mr. Clubforgrowth instead of sabotaging a decent candidate

  3. Five years ago, the Democratic leadership should have backed Sestak. If they had, Toomey wouldn’t be senator now.

  4. Five years ago, the Dems would have been better off sacrificing PA and putting those millions into winnable races like Russ Feingold that could have made better use of the money.

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