As McJoan points out over on Daily Kos, much of the conventional wisdom about U.S. Senator Patty Murray’s presumed vulnerability has been driven by Republican pollsters, but according to the latest Research 2000 poll, not so much:
What R2K found? Patty Murray is the most popular Democrat in the state, with (contra Rasmussen) a 52 percent approval, and a 51 percent approval among all-important Independents. Only Obama is more popular with Washingtonians.
What’s more, she handily beats the leading conventional-wisdom contenders Rossi and Rep. Dave Reichert (WA-08).
Patty Murray (D) 52
Dino Rossi (R) 41
Patty Murray (D) 51
Dave Reichert (R) 43
While Republican pollsters and consultants have made an awful lot of money over the past 18 years underestimating Murray, Republican challengers haven’t done nearly so well, with the diminutive Democrat ending the the political careers of three sitting Republican congress-critters in a row. I suppose Dino Rossi or Dave Reichert might be dumb/arrogant enough to take a shot at Murray and hope for a Big Red Wave, but if I were them I’d wait to see a little more post-health-care-vote polling before counting on a right-wing surge to sweep them into the Senate.
Though as a liberal blogger, I gotta admit that a Rossi, Reichert or Susan Hutchison candidacy would make for an awful lot of fodder and fun.