Dems Could Actually Lose Kennedy Seat
Swing voters weak on Coakley—even some who back health care
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2010 8:58 AM CST
Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley speaks during a news conference at her campaign headquarters in Charlestown, Mass. Monday, Jan. 11, 2010.   (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

(Newser) – Turnout remains the most important factor in the Massachusetts Senate election, but it’s not the only factor. The latest Rasmussen poll has Coakley ahead by just 2 points, despite an electorate that gives Barack Obama a 57% approval rating, notes Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight.com. In an election widely characterized as a health care referendum, 8% approve of health care, yet aren’t in Coakley’s column—including 5% planning to vote for Brown.

“If this were just about turnout, I would feel relatively safe about Coakley’s position,” writes Silver. The Democratic establishment has, belatedly, realized just how close it is to an embarrassing upset, and is working to get out its voters. But the numbers show that “there are still some swing voters here, and there is still some persuasion to do.”