• MI-11, MI-06: EPIC-MRA has new polls of two Michigan GOP House primaries, conducted on behalf of a group of local media outlets. The 11th District contest is extremely hard to poll, though, since only one candidate, Kerry Bentivolio, is actually on the ballot, while his chief rival, Nancy Cassis, is waging a write-in bid. EPIC asked two different questions of respondents. First, they tried: “In the Republican primary for the 11th Congressional District, who are you voting for: Kerry Bentivolio, someone else, or are you undecided?” That yielded just 21% for Bentivolio, while 40% said “someone else” and 39% were undecided.
Then they offered this twist: “In the Republican primary for the 11th Congressional District, only one name appears on the ballot, Kerry Bentivolio, but Nancy Cassis is running as a write-in candidate. Knowing this, would you vote for Bentivolio or write in Cassis’ name?” That led to Cassis beating Bentivolio 52-36 with just 12% undecided. Personally, I think the best approach is to do what Alaska pollster Ivan Moore did when Lisa Murkowski waged her write-in Senate bid in 2010: He started by asking an open-ended question that allowed interviewees to volunteer Murkowski’s name, then prompted them with a question similar to EPIC’s second query here.
There are also some numbers from the MI-06 race, where ex-state Rep. Jack Hoogendyk has been doggedly challenging Rep. Fred Upton from the right. But Hoogendyk never got quite the level of support from the Club for Growth that I figured he’d need to pull off the upset, so I’m not surprised to see him trailing by a 61-31 spread.