Today it was announced that, as a cost-saving measure, the major television networks and the Associated Press will only be doing exit polling in 31 states. In the past polling had been done in all 50 states.
That’s interesting in and of itself, but perhaps more interesting for political observers here in North Dakota is that our state – home to a hotly contested Senate race between Heidi Heitkamp and Rick Berg – was one of the 19 states where there will be no exit polling. It’s also the only state of the 19 that had competitive races, a fact specifically mentioned in this Washington Post article about the development:
Comparing this list with the election map, reveals how carefully the exit poll planners allocated resources. All 19 of the states with no exit polls are classified as either “solid Obama” or “solid Romney,” and there is only one “toss-up” gubernatorial or U.S. Senate race not on the list: the competitive North Dakota match-up of Heidi Heitkamp and Rick Berg.
Actions speak louder than words. The media narrative about North Dakota’s Senate race has it as a close contest, and admittedly Heitkamp has made it more of a race than most observers (including myself) expected, but most here in North Dakota feel that Berg is still the favorite to win. And clearly, judging by the media’s allocation of their election coverage resources, they’re confident Berg is going to hold on as well.
Judging to the orgy of poo-flinging Democrats have been engaged in against Berg over the last several weeks (the latest bit of nonsense here), they must feel like they’re behind too.