Health care and bratwurst in Wisconsin

 

A trip to Milwaukee for NCAA basketball and an incredible meal at Karl Ratzsch’s restaurant the day Congress passed the President’s health-care reforms made us curious about the aftereffect on two potential targets: Wisconsin’s Dave Obey (D-7) and Steve Kagen (D-8).

David Obey (left) represents the northwest  portion of Wisconsin–the land of lumberjacks, muskies and sky-blue waters. Best known for being the home area of former Congressman and Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird, the district has continued to trend Democratic in recent years. John Kerry earned 51% of the vote in 2004, and Barack Obama made a stronger 56% showing in 2008.

Last night (3/24/10), we asked 1,700+ voters in Obey’s district this question:

Your congressman, David Obey, voted in favor of the president’s health-care package last Sunday. Does that make you more likely, or less likely to support him for re-election?

Here are the responses:

Wisconsin 7: Reaction to Health Care Package

 More likelyLess likelyUndecided
OVERALL38.61.%53.49%7.89%
GENDER
Female40.42%51.01%8.57%
Male35.89%59.43%4.68%
PARTY AFFILIATION
Democrat71.05%22.02%6.93%
Republican11.83%85.06%3.11%
Independent/Other30.93%60.39%8.67%
Date of Poll: March 24, 2010
Number of responses: 1,731
Margin of Error: ±2.33%

 

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Congressman Steve Kagen is a physician (and he sure wants you to know it…check out his website). The district itself includes Green Bay and vacation destination Door County, and has exhibited a decidedly independent spirit in elections. Bush pulled 55% of the district in 2004, but Obama scored nearly 54% in 2008. Kagen…er…DR. Kagen replaced Republican Mark Green who left office to run for governor.

How did the independent-minded voters of WI-8 respond to the following?

Your congressman, Steve Kagen, voted in favor of the president’s health-care package last Sunday. Does that make you more likely, or less likely to support him for re-election?

Here are the results from 1,600+ district voters:

Wisconsin 8: Reaction to Health Care Package

 More likelyLess likelyUndecided
OVERALL37.19%56.38%6.43%
GENDER
Female39.04%53.94%7.02%
Male34.14%61.45%4.41%
PARTY AFFILIATION
Democrat67.19%26.56%6.25%
Republican12.10%83.73%4.17%
Independent/Other32.59%61.26%6.14%
Date of Poll: March 24, 2010
Number of responses: 1,643
Margin of Error: ±2.41%

 

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As we’ve seen throughout the nation, Independent voters will be the key to the re-election bid of these and other incumbents.

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