Morning Digest: Even Matt Bevin’s own poll shows him trailing in Kentucky

Kentucky Republican gubernatorial nominee Matt Bevin

Republican Matt Bevin

Leading Off:
KY-Gov: Ah, yes. We can now add Matt Bevin to the rarefied Hall of Shame for candidates who release internal polls showing them trailing their opponents. Bevin’s new survey, from Republican pollster Fabrizio Lee, finds him losing to Democrat Jack Conway by a 44-41 margin, with left-leaning independent Drew Curtis taking 11. This means that Bevin would have to scrape up all the remaining undecideds—all 4 percent of them—just to eke out a win.

Even sadder, Fabrizio’s poll included some axe-grindy message-testing questions along the lines of, “Would you rather vote for a Republican who opposes Obama’s policies or a Democrat who would be a rubber stamp for the president?” This kind of stuff might be helpful early in a campaign, but Election Day is just two weeks away. Does Bevin really think he can persuade voters to view Conway

a “rubber stamp” if he hasn’t managed to do so already? (And despite this ridiculous wording, 39 percent say they’d prefer the rubber stamp!)

Fabrizio’s topline numbers are actually quite close to what we’ve seen from the only two public polls published recently: SurveyUSA had Conway ahead 42-37 and Mason-Dixon had him up 43-41. Both, however, had Curtis at roughly half of where Fabrizio sees him, but if Bevin’s poll is right about Curtis’ standing, that’s actually even worse for him, since Curtis voters are more likely to cotton to Conway in the end.

And while Bevin continues to flounder, it doesn’t look like the cavalry will be showing up any time soon. According to Nathan Gonzales, Democrats are still badly outspending Republicans on the airwaves, and the RGA is still refusing to help Bevin. It’s amazing to behold, but Republicans really just might lose this thing.

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