Thursday, October 31, 2013

More Polling In The Inland Empire-- More Good News For Eloise Reyes


Ros-Lehtinen (FL) and Denham (CA), 2 Republicans in favor of immigration reform... unlike Gary Miller

Gary Miller, a multimillionaire, crooked Confederate Civil War reenactor from Arkansas was always an odd pick for the new Inland Empire district carved 2 years ago out of the districts of retiring congressmen David Dreier and Jerry Lewis and defeated Blue Dog, Joe Baca. The only reason Miller won is because DCCC Chairman Steve Israel insisted on backing a pathetic empty suit, the appointed mayor of Redlands, Peter Aguilar. Aguilar was rejected by Democratic voters and lost to two Republicans. He even came in third in Redlands! Steve Israel almost looks like he wants to keep Miller in the seat; he forced the DCCC into the awkward position of endorsing the wealthy but socially conservative Aguilar again, despite the obvious progressive choice, Eloise Gomez Reyes.

CA-31 is the single bluest district in the country-- by far-- with a Republican incumbent... and we can thank Steve Israel's incompetence for that. Why Nancy Pelosi doesn't tell him to go defeat Fred Upton, Peter King and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and keep out of California, a state that he's proven himself to be entirely clueless about, is beyond me. But the good news here is that another batch of new polling indicates that Miller's time in DC is just about over.

The first batch of PPP polling in CA-31, released October 6, was meant to measure voter feelings towards Miller in regard to the government shutdown he championed. His approved rating was a dismal 27% and if the election had been held that day, 48% would have voted for his Democratic incumbent and 39% would have voted for Miller. Once voters were told that Miller supported the shutdown, he kept his 39% of Tea Party nuts but the Democratic opponent increased her share of the vote from 48 to 51%.

  Less than a month later, PPP was back in CA-31, this time working with SEIU, and measuring how dissatisfied voters there are with Miller's obstruction of comprehensive immigration reform. Without even mentioning that Miller is a notorious racist and xenophobe, the situation pollsters found looked extremely bad for him. PPP claims Miller could improve his chances for reelection if he gives up on his long record of dogged opposition to immigration reform and backs the bill that fellow Republicans Jeff Denham (R-CA) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) just signed onto as co-sponsors. In CA-31 overall support for comprehensive immigration reform is 66% and only 23% say they oppose it. Even among Republicans, support for comprehensive reform is 58% (with 31% opposing). Among independents-- a key factor in this district-- 62% support it and 32% oppose it.

PPP learned that voters say they would be more likely to give Miller a second chance if he backed immigration reform-- and by a significant margin. 39% said they be more likely to vote for him if he did and only 28% said they would be less likely to vote for him. Among independents, 37% say they would be more likely to vote for Miller if he votes for immigration reform and only 33% say that vote would make them less likely to back him.

Meanwhile, as you can probably guess, Eloise Reyes is the strongest backer of immigration reform among all the candidates running and has already worked the hardest on the issue. This morning she told me that "I don’t need a poll to tell me that comprehensive immigration reform is overdue in our country. My brothers, sisters and I were raised in an immigrant family, and so many of our neighbors, colleagues and friends here in San Bernardino County are first-generation Americans. I’ve heard the stories about undocumented workers exploited by their employers, families torn apart by deportation and the students sidelined from higher education because they could never even apply for a loan.

"These tragedies are not the stories that should be defining America.

"The reality is that over 11 million Americans are living in the shadows, and nothing is going to change unless we create a path forward for the immigrants who are currently here and the immigrants who want to come here. The American Dream is not something that starts and stops with those of us who have already made it. Comprehensive immigration reform is about putting a system into place that protects the core values of our country-- opportunity, access, inclusion-- and this week’s PPP proves that reforming our immigration system is the American thing to do."

Blue America has endorsed Eloise and if you'd like to help her beat Gary Miller and Blue Dog/NRA super-star Joe Baca, who's trying to worm his way back into Congress, please consider making a contribution here.

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