Is anyone following Utah 02, where

Matheson Faces Primary Test


UT-2: Morgan Philpot vs. Jim Matheson


RealClear rates the race “Likely Dem” and Sabato’s Crystal Ball,

evidently rates it Safe Dem.

Incidentally, the Abramowitz piece, which I have seen cited with approval in several places, strikes me as very shallow.

It projects results from 1994 onto 2010, which, barring other problems, is valid if and only if the Republican Wave – the tendency of voters to favor Republican candidates – is just as strong, no more, no less, in 2010 as in 1994.

I am hoping the wave is stronger, but what is Abramowitz’s evidence that it is not?

There are some striking similarities between the mood of the American people today and the mood of the country 16 years ago. The most important similarity is that President Obama, like President Clinton in 1994, has seen his approval ratings fall below 50 percent which is generally considered the danger zone for an incumbent president and his party. The Democratic-controlled 111th Congress, like the Democratic-controlled 103rd Congress, is very unpopular with an approval rating of 21 percent in a May Gallup Poll. And only 24 percent of Americans according to the same poll are satisfied with the way things are going in the country. Given these results, it is not surprising that Republicans have been running either even with or ahead of Democrats when voters are asked which party they want to control the next Congress.

That’s it.

Even applying Abramowitz’s flawed analysis to UT-02 gives Philpot a 32% chance (Hotline says UT-02 gave McCain 58% and Cook’s PVI is R+15, nach Ruffini).