Even the Democrats’ own polls show U.S. Sen. Ben Nelson is “in deep trouble.”
A poll by the Democratic Public Policy Polling firm shows Attorney General Jon Bruning would thump Nelson, 50 percent to 39 percent, if they squared off right now in a poll whose authors wrote, “It’s going to be a very tough road for Democrats to hold onto this seat.”
It’s not hard to peg the reason for Nelson’s precarious situation: you need to have a lot of appeal to Republicans if you’re going to win as a Democrat in Nebraska, and while Nelson had that in the past he doesn’t seem to anymore. The 2006 exit poll showed him winning a pretty remarkable 42% of the GOP vote. Now his approval rating with Republicans is down at 26%, and he gets just 17% of their votes against Bruning and 16% against Stenberg. Nelson actually has a 9 point advantage with independents over Bruning and a 17 point one over Stenberg but that’s not enough given his lack of crossover support in the heavily GOP leaning state.