Could Bachmann Lose?

Based on an internal poll done for Democratic candidate Jim Graves by Greenberg Quinlan Rossner, Salon‘s Alex Seitz-Wald has an article out suggesting that uber-wingnut congresswoman Michele Bachmann may be in trouble.

The poll shows Graves trailing Bachmann by one two percent, despite very low name ID. That means, in theory, he should be able to “grow” his vote in the small undecided category.

One reason this scenario is plausible is that Bachmann doesn’t (in contrast to the last two cycles) have the benefit of a third-party candidate to attract what might otherwise be Democratic voters. She’s also managed to perform some fresh antics in Washington (the bizarre attacks on Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin) recently that attracted criticism from Republicans as well as Democrats. At the margins, it may also matter that Bachmann does not live in the district (her home town was removed during the last round of redistricting), though most of it is familiar territory.

On the other hand, of course, Bachmann has a vast national fundraising network, and a partisan advantage in the district (its PVI number, indicating its partisan leanings as compared to the country as a whole, is R+7). The Cook Political Report still has the race rated as “Likely Republican,” though it’s not clear the GQR poll was factored into that rating. I’m certainly adding this contest of things to watch in the runup to November 6. For progressives, getting rid of Bachmann would be either a nice capper to a successful evening, or a good consolation prize.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.