Why Akin matters: Obama now leads Romney in Missouri
The Kansas City Star
Think Mitt Romney is a sure-fire winner in Missouri this November? Think again.
At least that’s the takeaway from the new survey, released Friday, by Republican-leaning Rasmussen Reports.
President Barack Obama leads 47-46, wiping out Romney’s previous six-point lead.
Yes, I know, it’s one poll, completely at odds with months of other polls. Obama sure hasn’t been popular for a long time in this state. Then again, this survey ought to at least light a little spark under Obama-believers in Missouri.
And why is this happening?
Thank you, Todd Akin.
The U.S. representative’s inane comments on abortion, which have attracted national attention, seem to have stirred the base of Democratic and independent voters in Missouri.
At least for now, they’re waking up.
Maybe - just maybe - they don’t want Missouri to look like the kind of weird state that supports the kind of nonsenseput on public display by elected officials such as Todd Akin.
The surge for Obama could reflect the fact that Missouri voters aren’t going to - in knee-jerk fashion - follow a Romney-Ryan ticket this fall.
Remember that Paul Ryan and Akin are like brothers on the abortion issue, both hold ultraconservative views that many Missourians don’t agree with. Thanks to Akin and the relentless attention on this issue, Missourians are now aware of that fact.
Notice, too, that Democrat Claire McCaskill has surged to a 10-point lead against Akin, 48-38, in the Rasmussen Reports survey released Thursday.
McCaskill can pooh-pooh the results all she wants, partly because she wants Akin to stay in the race and not drop out, as the Republican Party wants.
But I’d look at it another way: That despite McCaskill’s unpopularity - and despite the fact that Akin should never, ever be underestimated (as I wrote Thursday) - it’s also possible that Missourians aren’t as conservative as so many people think they are.