The most competitive Congressional contest in Massachusetts is the Richard Tisei-John Tierney race. Congressman Tierney has been barraged with an onslaught of negative publicity over his family and the gambling issue, and outside money has been deployed in large amounts to continue the assault on Tierney. It may be having a real impact.
The Boston Globe, in the same survey showing Elizabeth Warren leading Scott Brown, shows Richard Tisei opening up a six point lead on John Tierney, 37% to 31%, with 30% undecided. Tierney is polling below 60% with Democrats, a fatal number if it holds. (54% Tierney, 10% Tisei, 34% undecided). Tisei has a big lead with independents, at 39% to 23%, with 30% undecided. With Republicans Tisei is at 70%, and that number will likely go up by election time.
Republicans have identified Tierney early on as a vulnerable Democratic incumbent, and have put in some big dollars to try to oust him. The Young Guns PAC has poured about $900,000 into this race, and the NRCC close to $1 million. The Salem News is reporting that Democratic Super PAC “House Majority” has pulled a $630,000 media buy designed to help Tierney. That is not a good sign for the Tierney campaign.
The Salem News story has Congressman Tierney attacking the methodology of the Globe poll, claiming that it over-sampled Republicans. I guess Republicans are not the only folks griping about survey methodology. I don’t see much merit in the methodology argument, no matter which side is making the complaint. I have yet to see an attack on methodology from any campaign that was listed as being ahead. Hmmmm.
The campaign has a way to go, and it is a bit too early to be writing John Tierney off, but Richard Tisei has to be encouraged by the results. The Congressional race to watch in Massachusetts.