Mcmullen, Mcmullin, Utah discussed on POLITICO Playbook Audio Briefing


Making this pitch to voters. And you kind of forget what a skilled politician Barack Obama is. And I think Democrats are remembering that. But they're also know that he is just so much more well liked and trusted among independent voters than really any other major political figure kind of on both sides of the aisle at this point. And so it makes sense for them to trot him out instead of someone like Joe Biden who at this point in time doesn't have the favor above unfavorable numbers, perhaps. Correct. Exactly. He doesn't have the same sway among independent voters that the Barack Obama does. I also wanted to talk to you about a few wildcard races that might not get the same focus as the other races that seem interesting to me. Let's start with the Senate recent Utah, if you're not familiar with this race, it's Republican incumbent Mike Lee versus independent Evan McMullen, McMullen is a former 2016 presidential candidate. He's an anti Trump independent conservative. Back in August, Politico's Burgess Everett dubbed it the strangest Senate race in America. Utah Democrats voted to back McMullen during the primaries to increase their chances of defeating Lee, McMullen has stated if he wins the election, he won't caucus with either party. What do you notice in this race stack? Yeah, so I mean, Utah Democrats opted not to nominate a candidate. So that mcmullin could potentially get across the finish line. They made the strategic and in the eyes of some conservatives a cynical choice to think that a democratic candidate of a candidate with a D after his or her name would have a harder time getting elected than independent Evan mcmullin. And what we've seen in the polls that are available at least the polls that I've seen that are available is that both Lee and mcmullin are polling around 40%, the race seems somewhat up in the air that there's a large number of undecided voters and there's a sense that things are pretty fluid. In recent days, you've seen Republicans, I think, really try to lean into this image of McMullen as being sort of a democratic wolf in sheep's clothing that Tucker Carlson has gone on the attack against him, Ted Cruz has gone on the attack against him. And all of that is strategic because it's an effort to try and fire up the Republican base and fire up Republican voters and conservatives to think, you know, I might not like Mike Lee, but I don't want Evan mcmullin, a Democrat, and he's not a Democrat. He's a conservative who is an independent conservative and anti Trump conservative. But that would be enough to disqualify him. Is there hope? Just qualify him in the eyes of conservative voters. So we'll see if that works and we'll see what the final numbers are, but that race is so bizarre. And it is hard to know how it shakes out. It is unpredictable in ways that just given the dynamics involved in that and given the variables in it, it is much more difficult to game out than some of the other more predictable if undecided races that we see. One more race, I would like to ask you about, you can't talk to Zack Stanton without bringing up Michigan and thus we move to the Michigan third congressional district, located in Grand Rapids and surrounding neighborhoods.

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