Burns Bounces Back

Burns.bmpIn spite of a recent spat over Burns’ comments to Virginia firefighters, Sen. Conrad Burns is now tied with far left rival Jon Tester.  This is significant because it is the best Burns has faired since January, the last time he was tied with Tester.  Burns’ negatives are also down, as it is now only a slight majority that view him unfavorably.  Also significant in the poll, only 13% of voters consider government corruption the most important issue.  An uptick in this area before the election might not be such a bad thing, though, as Jon Tester has some ethical troubles of his own.

This is also a race in which there will be a ripple effect from the Connecticut primary.  Jon Tester will have to face the hardest question of all: Lamont or Lieberman?  Choose Lieberman, and his friends at Daily Kos will consider him a traitor, and he will lose his most ardent supporters.  Choose Lamont and the six percent of undecided voters get scared away.  The state may have a popular Democrat Governor, but he has only managed to remain popular by distancing himself from the far left.

Burns will also benefit from several GOP top guns coming to town, including Vice President Cheeney.  Not only will Cheeney and Co. bring in the big bucks, but they will also serve to nationalize the race, reminding Montanans of just how bad things would be with Democrats calling the shots.  If this latest poll is accurate, the Senator from Montana already has the advantage.  That advantage will only grow as he exploits his 4:1 cash on hand advantage.  Burns isn’t quite safe, but he’s looking much better than many would like to believe.

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