Today I got an email asking me to donate to the Senate Conservative Fund, an organization founded by Jim DeMint. The pitch for the fund is that if I donate money, I will get help to elect more Jim DeMints:
What we need -- no, what we must have -- in the U.S. Senate are more Constitutional Conservatives like Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Mike Lee, Pat Toomey, Ron Johnson and, yes, like Senator DeMint!
Senators who believe that the United States Constitution does and should govern our country.
The five candidates they want me to give money to are...
Josh Mandel (R-Ohio)
Ted Cruz (R-Texas)
Mark Neumann (R-Wisconsin)
Jeff Flake (R-Arizona)
Richard Mourdock (R-Indiana)
So is America ready to elect more DeMint style conservatives? I tried to find polling data on each of the races that the fund is supporting.
Josh Mandel in Ohio? Not looking so good:
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, leads Republican state Treasurer Josh Mandel by 16 points, according to new Quinnipiac University survey released on Wednesday.
Brown leads Mandel 50 percent to 34 percent in the poll. In the previous survey, released on May 10, Brown led 46 percent to 40 percent over Mandel, who is also an Iraq War veteran.
Mark Neumann in Wisconsin? Not likely to win his GOP primary:
Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson (R) continues to lead the field in Wisconsin's crowded Senate primary, but businessman Eric Hovde (R) has surged into second place, according to a new poll from Marquette University.
Thompson is at 35 percent in the poll, while Hovde is at 23, former Rep. Mark Neumann (R-Wis.) fades to 10 and Wisconsin state Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald (R) slides to 6. Thompson's support is virtually unchanged from the last time the group polled the race in mid-June, but Hovde has climbed from 14 percent, while Neumann has fallen from 16 percent.
Jeff Flake in Arizona? Leading but in a race that is possibly tightening:
Strong support from independent voters has Democratic candidates within striking distance of Republicans in Arizona. Recent polling from Project New America (PNA) shows President Barack Obama trailing Mitt Romney by 3 points in Arizona, and likely Democratic Senate nominee Richard Carmona trailing likely Republican nominee Jeff Flake by 2 points.
The poll, which surveyed 791 likely Arizona voters on June 4-5, showed Romney with a 49-46 lead over Obama, and Jeff Flake with a 43-41 lead over Carmona. Both races are within the poll’s +/-3.5% margin of error.
A new poll released today does have good news for Ted Cruz in his Texas primary against David Dewhurst:
The Republican pollster that signaled Dick Lugar’s demise and Deb Fischer’s late surge is now flagging an upset in the making in the Texas Senate race.
Tea party favorite Ted Cruz is leading Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst 47 percent to 38 percent in the GOP runoff, according to a new survey by the Columbus, Ohio-based Wenzel Strategies.
I couldn't find any polling on Mourdock's race in Indiana.
DeMint's disciples may win some races, but they are still far away from taking over the entire Senate or even from winning all their primaries, which is something that donors may want to keep in mind before they part with their cash.
As for the senate more broadly, its notable that even in an environment that should be favorable to Republicans, retaking the Senate is still seen as a 50-50 proposition.