GOP candidate Bob Turner defeated Democrat David Weprin by 6 points last night in the special election to replace ousted Representative Anthony Weiner in New York’s 9th Congressional District. TNR’s Assistant Editor Eliza Gray was on hand in Queens to cover the special election. Here’s her take on the run-up to yesterday’s events.

While voters showed fears about overspending, jobs, and the economy, coupled with strong feelings about sparing entitlements like Medicare and Social Security from cuts, Republicans warned that what transpired in yesterday’s election portends just a glimpse of what may come in 2012. The GOP is claiming the special election in New York’s 9th District was a referendum on President Obama’s policies.

At a results party, Weprin refused to concede, promising supporters a “long night” until absentee and paper ballots came in. Democrats had hoped their last second, union-backed efforts would push them over the edge, but the numbers were grim from the start. As the results came in, it was clear Weprin never had a chance to catch up, garnering only 47 percent of the vote (to Turner’s 53) and showing that Weprin’s deficit was too big to overcome, even with a last ditch voter turn-out effort.

So what does this mean for Democrats? Will an unpopular President Obama be a liability for Democrats nationwide in a 2012 general election? There’s plenty of time yet for that to be decided.

Courtesy of Talking Points Memo

Polls opened this morning in New York’s 9th District to pick Anthony Weiner’s replacement. Despite the district’s 3:1 ratio of Democrats to Republicans, Democrat David Weprin trails GOP nominee Bob Turner 50-44 in most recent polls. So, why are Democrats losing Anthony Weiner’s seat?
Weprin’s problem is holding onto Democrats and some Independents, accounting for his lousy numbers in what should be a safe Democratic seat. Locally Weprin is relatively unpopular, and his favorability numbers are at 41-41 in the district.
By contrast, Turner’s favorability ratings are sky-high at 48-34 at just the right time. Voters think Turner is running a more positive campaign, and the perception of Weprin as unelectable continues to snowball as his favorability numbers continue to dip district-wide.
That may not be the whole story. Weprin continues to drop, even in areas where he once led comfortably. For example, his lead with Jewish voters has collapsed from 21 to 6 in just the last month.
It may not just be a local issue for Weprin. Another major factor behind Turner opening up a massive lead prior to election day is the national factor of President Obama’s weak standing in the district, given voters’ dismal outlook on the economy. With Obama’s approval rating in the low 30’s, it remains hard for Democrats to win open seat races in places where Obama is that unpopular.
Barring an unexpected turn of events today, it appears that this race is the one the Democrats may just have to file in the loss column and move on.
Courtesy of Talking Points Memo
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Polls opened this morning in New York’s 9th District to pick Anthony Weiner’s replacement. Despite the district’s 3:1 ratio of Democrats to Republicans, Democrat David Weprin trails GOP nominee Bob Turner 50-44 in most recent polls. So, why are Democrats losing Anthony Weiner’s seat?

Weprin’s problem is holding onto Democrats and some Independents, accounting for his lousy numbers in what should be a safe Democratic seat. Locally Weprin is relatively unpopular, and his favorability numbers are at 41-41 in the district.

By contrast, Turner’s favorability ratings are sky-high at 48-34 at just the right time. Voters think Turner is running a more positive campaign, and the perception of Weprin as unelectable continues to snowball as his favorability numbers continue to dip district-wide.

That may not be the whole story. Weprin continues to drop, even in areas where he once led comfortably. For example, his lead with Jewish voters has collapsed from 21 to 6 in just the last month.

It may not just be a local issue for Weprin. Another major factor behind Turner opening up a massive lead prior to election day is the national factor of President Obama’s weak standing in the district, given voters’ dismal outlook on the economy. With Obama’s approval rating in the low 30’s, it remains hard for Democrats to win open seat races in places where Obama is that unpopular.

Barring an unexpected turn of events today, it appears that this race is the one the Democrats may just have to file in the loss column and move on.

Courtesy of Talking Points Memo