|Poll||Date||Sample||Harmer (R)||McNerney (D)||Spread|
|Final Results||--||--||46.9||48.0||McNerney +1.1|
|SurveyUSA||10/8 - 10/11||624 LV||48||42||Harmer +6|
|AAF/Ayers (R)||8/23 - 8/28||400 LV||45||44||Harmer +1|
|2008: McNerney (D) 55%, Andal (R) 45%||2008: Obama (D) 54%, McCain (R) 44%
|2006: McNerney (D) 53%, Pombo (R) 47%||2004: Bush (R) 54%, Kerry (D) 45%|
|2004: Pombo (R) 61%, McNerney (D) 39%||2000: Bush (R) 52%, Gore (D) 44%|
10/24/10 --Two polls in a row show Harmer leading McNerney. This is really bad news for the incumbent.
The 11th Congressional district is a misshapen amalgamation of precincts stretching across central California. It resembles a hammerhead shark, viewed from the top, making a sharp left U-turn. The population base of the district is in San Joaquin county, centered on the cities of Stockton and Lodi. A salient from the neighboring 18th District extends northward to take in the most heavily Democratic portions of Stockton, leaving the portions in the 18th fairly Republican. The “head” of the shark cuts a “T” across Contra Costa, Alamdeda, and Santa Clara counties. The precincts here are more heavily Democratic, but they are still relatively centrist by California standards. In essence, the 11th serves to take swing counties from the 10th, turning the 10th into a Democratic bastion.
In 2006, Jerry McNerney swept longtime incumbent Richard Pombo out of office. McNerney wasn’t supposed to win, but rode the wave to a close win. In 2008, McNerney survived a game challenge from Dean Andal. It was simply not the right year to be a Republican running in California, and McNerney won 55 percent to 45 percent.
2010 is a likely different year altogether. The area is among the most heavily foreclosed-upon in the country, and the economy is flailing here. The anger that many residents felt toward the Bush administration is now turning against the Obama administration. McNerney faces attorney David Harmer in the general election. Harmer held John Garamendi to a surprisingly narrow 10-point win in the neighboring 10th district late last year and has an excellent chance to improve upon that performance in this narrowly Republican district.