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From: Lake Research Partners Re: New Survey in PA-06 Reveals Gerlach Vulnerable to Upset
Date: May 31, 2012
A recent survey of likely voters in Pennsylvania’s newlydrawn 6th Congressional District reveals Republican Jim Gerlach highly vulnerable to an upset by primary care Robert G. Meadow, Ph.D. physician and Iraq war veteran, Manan Trivedi.1 Gerlach Partner starts out well under fifty percent of the vote and quickly loses his lead once voters learn more about the two candidates. Five major Daniel R. Gotoff Partner factors compound Gerlach’s weakness: 1) A narrow majority of this district is now comprised of new voters whom he has never represented; 2) The top of the ticket is creating headwinds for the GOP, with Tresa Undem their Senate and Presidential nominees both losing; Partner 3) Voters afford Gerlach strikingly low personal and job Rick A. Johnson performance ratings; Senior Vice President 4) Independent of the alternative, only three-in-ten voters Robert X. Hillman believe Gerlach deserves re-election today; and Chief Operating Officer 5) The undecided voters lean heavily Democratic and look far more favorable for Trivedi than Gerlach.
Joshua E. Ulibarri Partner
Taken together, now represents a unique opportunity to switch this seat from red to blue. In an initial trial heat, Gerlach starts out ahead though well under fifty percent of the vote against Trivedi (45% to 33% Trivedi, with 22% undecided) and his support only deteriorates as voters learn more about the two candidates. In fact, after simulating a competitive communications environment the race quickly draws to a tie (39% to 39%, with 22% still undecided). The exact text of the statements read to respondents is provided on the following
Lake Research Partners designed and administered this survey of 408 likely General
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2 page. Informed Trial Heat: Candidate Profiles Gerlach Profile:
Jim Gerlach is a husband and proud father, raising his six children in Chester County. He understands the challenges facing families in our area. Jim has been ranked one of the most independent members of Congress, working with Democrats and Republicans to make government serve taxpayers, not bureaucrats. He co-sponsored a law to end bonuses for C-EOs and top executives that got bailouts, and serves on a select committee that is helping fix our trade imbalance and put American and Pennsylvania products in every corner of the globe. He’s been a check against big government spending and government-run health care, and is working to make middleclass tax cuts permanent, which would save taxpayers an average of $2,000 per year. Jim is a tireless, independent voice for Pennsylvania. 39% Gerlach
Manan Trivedi was born and raised in Berks County. He is a husband, father, primary care doctor and an Iraq war veteran. His career is one of public service, the exact opposite of a Washington politician. Trivedi says the American Dream in under attack. We're in danger of leaving the next generation worse off for the first time in our history. But instead of working to create jobs and restore the middle-class, Jim Gerlach double-dips into two taxpayer-funded pensions, one of which he voted to increase by 50%. Gerlach has grown out of touch. Trivedi will fight to end unfair trade deals that ship jobs overseas. Trivedi will push for good American jobs that can’t be outsourced in industries like clean-energy manufacturing, reduce our dependence on foreign oil, and help rebuild our middle class. 39% Trivedi
The softness of Gerlach’s support is underscored by voters’ exceedingly low assessment of the job he is doing. In fact, his job performance ratings are the lowest we have seen for an incumbent member of Congress this cycle. Fewer than three-in-ten voters rate Gerlach’s job performance positively (28% excellent/ good job). That compares to nearly half of voters who rate his performance negatively (45% just fair/ poor). Gerlach does not even have the benefit of personal popularity to offset his underwater job performance ratings, as just 42% of voters have a favorable opinion of him personally and 25% have an unfavorable opinion. Voters’ dissatisfaction with Congressman Gerlach is leaving them looking for an alternative. Today, only 30% of voters would reelect Gerlach, leaving 70% who are open to new representation. Beyond Gerlach’s weaknesses, Trivedi also looks to benefit from both President Obama’s and Senator Bob Casey’s early leads at the top of the ballot. Finally, the profile of the undecided voters who will decide this race provides some of the most daunting news for Gerlach. In a district that is split in terms of party identification (41% each Democratic and Republican, 18% independent/ other), the undecided voters lean Democratic by a 20-point margin (47% Democratic, 27% Republican, 26% independent/ other) and are supporting Obama over Romney by an even wider 27-point margin. Bottom Line: Pennsylvania’s 6th district is not the same landscape as it was 4 or even 2 years ago. Gerlach is in a severely weakened
Election voters in PA-06. The survey was conducted by telephone, using professional interviewers, May 21-23, 2012. The overall margin of error for this survey is +/-4.9%.
Lake Research Partners
3 position and redistricting’s wake has left him with the additional task of having to define himself to a new electorate that is already looking for an alternative. Trivedi’s message of public service and change resonates broadly in this district and moves the race into a tie, and he stands to benefit further from Democratic leanings at the top of the ticket and in the composition of the undecided vote. The combination of these factors provides a clear opening for Democrats to take this seat from red to blue.
Lake Research Partners