(Community Matters) Spend $400 million to tell the story, change the narrative. Ds have got to turn the perception on healthcare reform or we lose the Senate in November. This isn’t a national poll but a poll of likely voters in competitive races. Immigration reform, pay equity and gun reform very distant seconds. Spend $400 million changing the story.
Playbook: POLITICO’S FIRST ’14 POLL – “POLITICO poll shows mounting danger for Dems,” by Alexander Burns: “In the  congressional districts and  states where the 2014 elections will actually be decided, likely voters said they would prefer to vote for a Republican over a Democrat by 7 points, 41 percent to 34 percent. … Both Obama’s job approval and the partisan ballot matchup are markedly more negative for Democrats in this poll than other national surveys – a reflection of the political reality that the midterm campaign is being fought on turf that is more challenging for Democrats than the nation as a whole.
“The poll reveals that voters – even in the more conservative midterm states like Georgia and Arkansas, and tossup House districts in states such as Illinois, West Virginia and California – still lean in a liberal direction on several issues Democrats have championed this year, including immigration reform, pay equity for men and women and background checks for gun purchasers.
“But none of those issues comes close to … health care as a major concern for midterm voters. Nearly nine in 10 respondents said that the health care law would be important to determining their vote, including 49 percent who said it would be very important. By comparison, only 28 percent said that immigration reform was ‘very important’ to determining their vote, and 16 percent who said the same of male-female income disparity.” http://goo.gl/CjJnAZ
STORIES, DATA http://goo.gl/AD3mbL
–Mounting danger for Dems: Nearly two-thirds of voters said they prefer a government in which different parties control the White House and Congress, rather than one party controlling all the levers of power … Likely voters would prefer to vote for a Republican over a Democrat by 7 points, 41 percent to 34 percent … 37% said their interactions with the federal government over the past year had been more negative than positive.
–Health care: Nearly nine in 10 respondents said that the health care law would be important to determining their vote, including 49 percent who said it would be very important … 60% believe the debate over the ACA law should not be over … Broken down by region, only in the South did total repeal of the heath care law command the support of a majority – 51 percent.
–Immigration reform: 71% back sweeping change to immigration laws … Only 28% said that immigration reform was “very important” to determining their vote … Nine out of ten Hispanics support sweeping change to immigration laws … Support spans party lines: 64 percent of Republican respondents back comprehensive immigration reform, as do 78 percent of Democrats and 71 percent of independents.
–Gay marriage, and marijuana legalization: 52% oppose same-sex marriage … When looking at ages 18-34, 61% support same-sex marriage … 56% oppose marijuana legalization for recreational purposes.
–Gun Control, scandals, income disparity, abortion rights: 79% support tougher measures on gun purchases … 71% of Republicans support stricter background checks for gun purchasers – as do 90 percent of Democrats and 77 percent of independents … Only 11% were shocked “that a member of Congress was arrested for buying cocaine” … 16% said the male-female income disparity was “very important” in determining their vote … 54% support the right to an abortion either with no restrictions (19 percent) or some restrictions (35 percent).
“HOW THE POLL was conducted,” by Steven Shepard: “Partnering with SocialSphere Inc. of Cambridge, … POLITICO surveyed 867 likely voters in the states and districts with the most competitive Senate and House races, as ranked by the University of Virginia Center for Politics. … Likely voters were surveyed in the following states with competitive Senate elections: Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Oregon, South Dakota, Virginia and West Virginia. Additionally, likely voters were surveyed in  competitive House districts.” http://goo.gl/wtKSgq