Wisconsin: Paul Ryan Dominates Primary, Trump Getting Smashed, GOP Senate Seat in Peril

Guy Benson
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Posted: Aug 10, 2016 5:34 PM
Wisconsin: Paul Ryan Dominates Primary, Trump Getting Smashed, GOP Senate Seat in Peril

Let's review the significant political goings-on in the state of Wisconsin over the last 24 hours, starting with Paul Ryan's resounding primary victory over an "alt right"-backed, pro-Trump challenger. The House Speaker's critics on the Right -- including the likes of Ann Coulter and Sarah Palin -- aimed to "Cantor" Ryan, working for what they argued would be a victory for conservatism by exposing the powerful incumbent as out-of-touch with real Republicans. Then real Republicans actually voted, and the result was an epic landslide: Ryan won by 68 points, slightly outperforming the final public survey of the race. As they've done as Donald Trump's standing against Hillary Clinton has slid to a clear and sizable deficit, Ryan's opponents predicted that the polling was wrong and wasn't measuring a groundswell of public opinion. They were spectacularly wrong.  In reality, the Speaker of the House is extremely popular among Republicans in his district and state -- and quite popular among Wisconsin's general electorate, too:

Those numbers come from a brand new Marquette University Law School poll, in which other Republicans -- shall we say -- aren't faring as well as Ryan. We'll get to those in a moment, but first, read John McCormack's analysis positing that Ryan's blowout victory proves that the Trumpist wing of the Republican Party is largely confined to a cult of personality, as opposed to a translatable movement (Trump's last-minute endorsement of Ryan, after initially withholding it, notwithstanding).  Elsewhere, Governor Scott Walker's job approval rating is underwater by roughly 20 points as he prepares to mount a re-election campaign. Senator Ron Johnson is running ahead of the man at the top of the GOP ticket, but still trails his Democratic opponent badly.  That race is looking increasingly grim.  And here's the presidential situation in what is technically a battleground state:

Barring a major development of some sort, Wisconsin is off the board, folks.  She went from up four to up 15 in a month's time.  Badger State voters don't like Hillary Clinton (-10 favorability), but they really hate Donald Trump.  His personal favorability is at a dismal (27/65), with approximately two-thirds of respondents calling Trump dishonest, uncaring, and unqualified.  Fully 68 percent say a Trump presidency would make them uncomfortable.  Fifty-five percent say the same of Mrs. Clinton.  This poll is such a nightmare for Republicans in Wisconsin that I can't end this post on that note.  So here's a different survey from another battleground state that's been trending red:

The good news here is that Trump is out in front of Clinton in the Show Me State, unlike recent polling in places like Georgia. The less good news is that Mitt Romney carried Missouri by nearly ten percentage points four years ago.  I'll leave you with Ryan's primary night press conference, at which he referred to Trump's 'second amendment' remarks as a "joke gone bad:"