Senate GOP Election ODDS

Today Don Walton gave the latest “polls” on the GOP Gov’s race (Immigration holds spotlight in Nebraska – LJS – 4/10/06).

On Leavenworth Street, we are updating the ODDs on the Senate GOP race.
(Note that this is who we think WILL win the primary, not who is ahead in the polls right now.)

Pete Ricketts 5:2
Don Stenberg 3:1
Dave Kramer 10:1

Why the change from our earlier odds that had No-Show-Donno way down?
We overestimated the influence Dave Kramer had as GOP Chair (except, apparently, over state senators) and we overestimated newbie Pete Ricketts’s ability to buy enough ad time to lock things up quickly. Let’s take a closer look:

Ricketts
Petey has given 100% commitment to this campaign. He has financed it heavily. He’s battered the airwaves with his ads. He’s swung at least one key endorsement. Pete now probably has to push the message that AG Jon Bruning was delivering last week: PR is the only one who can beat EBN. If he can pound that message into the brain of the voters, he just may get them to fill in his oval on Election Day. Of course Pete’s lack of a government record and name ID are his biggest foes. He has probably gotten over the hump, but still has a tough road to hoe up to Election Day.

Stenberg
His ability to cruise along on his name recognition is working so far. Keeping his name in the news on the school and abortion issues has helped him to continue to look like a player. His refusal to debate, while a shrewd move, could still be his undoing. By not showing up at the Pete & Dave Show, Donny is trying to give the impression that the other two aren’t up to his level. Being the only one who’s held office, he can claim that. Though Chuck Hagel hadn’t run for office either (and/but we’re not claiming that Pete has CH’s gravitas). Can The Stenbergermeister continue to coast to victory on his name ID? This may depend on how much the Ricketts camp floors the gas. And it also will depend on how much GOP voters really want to beat Earl B. Nelson in the general…

Kramer
At this point, DK would be best to simply keep positive and position himself for another race. Like Dave Nabity, he has no chance to win, but he’s committed himself so much that he’s not going to quit. We all know this won’t be his last race. The best thing DK could do is make sure he leaves a positive impression with the voters for his eventual return. Is this in DK’s nature — to play nice and wait ‘til next time? We’ll have to wait and see on that…

This is another in a series of ODDS for the various races in Nebraska this year. You are encouraged to submit your reasoning why you think these odds should be changed.

Note: These odds are for amusement purposes only, and we checked these picks with that guy in Bellevue who nailed the Final Four, even though he thought he was picking GW instead of George Mason. Just so you know, we haven’t confused Pete Ricketts with Joe Ricketts. If any other campaign uses that line, you owe us cold hard cash.

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