Friday, January 22, 2010
Bad News Baron: The Polling Has Flip-Flopped
Bad news for Rep. Baron Hill. A poll in the race for Indiana’s 9th District U.S. House seat reveals that, if the polling is correct, it may be the Democratic incumbent and not perennial opponent and former Rep. Mike Sodrel that is fighting an uphill battle for another two-year term in the U.S. House.
The Hill magazine reports that Hill trails Sodrel, a Republican, 49-41 in a SurveyUSA poll commissioned by the liberal blog Firedoglake. From The Hill, “Hill has won three of four consecutive matchups with Sodrel, including by 20 points in 2008. That means the race has seen a net 28-point swing in 14 months. That's troubling if you're Hill, who has made overtures about running for governor in 2012.”
The poll did not report if it took into account attorney and former Marine Todd Young or real estate investor Travis Hankins who are also running for the office as Republicans. Young has over $205,000 cash on hand. Sodrel has just $1,919 with over $1.2 million reported in debts owed. To run credibly against Hill who has over $525,000 on hand, Sodrel will need to correct that. Democrat Gretchen Clearwater also is listed with a 9th District Campaign Committee and over $2,300 in cash.
This blogger has been critical of Hill for his treatment of a journalism student at a town hall meeting where he came off as condescending and, frankly, politically naïve that an exchange with the student wouldn’t make it to YouTube. It did. I also criticized Hill for sending out strong signals that he’s interested in running for Governor in 2012 while running for re-election to the House in 2010.
Other polling needs to be done, but the same company, SurveyUSA, reports that only 38 percent of the 600 likely voters polled in the 9th District approve of President Barack Obama’s job performance with 58 percent disapproving. Democrats are glad that there’s still a long, long way to go.
If I were Hill, I wouldn’t ignore this poll though. It’s time to get out the old campaign shoes and fight for his career. I know I have been hard on the guy a little, but Baron Hill is a better representative of Democratic values than either Todd Young, Travis Hankins or Mike Sodrel (who has a voting record) are.