Via Greg, I see that Chet Edwards has picked up a couple of nice endorsements, one from the Star Telegram, the other from a self-identified Republican columnist for Texas A&M's The Battalion. I'll echo Greg's comments about why the latter makes a better case for Edwards, and I'd like to highlight this little bit:
Arlene Wohlgemuth is Edwards' latest contender. Although she served five terms as a Texas state legislator, her only real claim to fame is preventing tax increases by cutting funding to health care programs like the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), which provides health insurance to children in low-income families. While Wohlgemuth totes that she saved taxpayers more than $1 billion, it actually caused a $500 million loss. According to the Houston Chronicle, "As a result of the CHIP cuts, Texas is turning away $500 million in federal matching funds."
Unfortunately, Wohlgemuth has nothing else to run on except for being a member of the Republican Party. Her yard signs bear the message "Bush, Cheney, Wohlgemuth." Clinging to the reputations of more popular politicians seems to be her best election strategy.
And according to this poll just released by the Edwards campaign, Wohlgemuth may be on the way to the same kind of defeat.
Congressman Chet Edwards leads Arlene Wohlgemuth by a commanding 10-point margin in the race for Texas Congressional District 17, according to a poll of 450 likely voters conducted October 11-13 by the respected Washington, DC polling firm of Bennett, Petts and Blumenthal. The poll shows Edwards leading Wohlgenuth 50% - 40% and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.9%.
“With less than three weeks to go until the election, Congressman Edwards is well-positioned to win re-election,” said Edwards pollster Anna Bennett. “Our polling over the last several months has seen a steady increase in Edwards’ support, while Arlene Wohlgemuth has actually lost ground.”
Bennett noted that voters are responding favorably to Edwards’ message of independence and putting his district above party politics. Edwards’ strong support for the military and national leadership on homeland security have helped cement his lead in the race, she said. At the same time, Wohlgemuth’s attacks on Edwards do not appear to be working, Bennett said.
Today, Edwards was endorsed by three Johnson County mayors, including the mayors of Cleburne and Burleson, Wohlgemuth’s hometown.
According to the new poll by students at Texas Tech, 53.5 percent of respondents favor Neugebauer and 23.3 percent favor Stenholm. The poll, which the university released late Monday, has a margin of error of plus or minus 5.2 percentage points.
Neugebauer's campaign isn't claiming victory just yet, however.
"We're very encouraged by the numbers, and our own polls show Neugebauer ahead," said spokesman Matt Schaefer. "But having said that, we know that we have to keep working and campaigning until Nov. 2."
A spokeswoman for Stenholm questioned the poll's accuracy.
"This may be fine as a training exercise, but it does not meet the standards of professional research," Jodi Zweifler said.
The numbers, however, closely mirror earlier findings by the Scripps Research Center showing Neugebauer with support from 52 percent of voters, and Stenholm with support from 29 percent.