United States Senate election in Montana, 2012

United States Senate election in Montana, 2012

November 6, 2012

 
Nominee Jon Tester Denny Rehberg Dan Cox
Party Democratic Republican Libertarian
Popular vote 236,123 218,051 31,892
Percentage 48.6% 44.6% 6.6%

County results
Tester:
     40–50%      50–60%      60–70%
Rehberg:
     40–50%      50–60%      60–70%      70–80%

U.S. Senator before election

Jon Tester
Democratic

Elected U.S. Senator

Jon Tester
Democratic

The 2012 United States Senate election in Montana was held on November 6, 2012, alongside a presidential election, other elections to the United States Senate in other states, as well as elections to the United States House of Representatives and various state and local elections.

Incumbent Democrat Jon Tester successfully ran for reelection to a second term, gaining 48.6% of the vote against Republican U.S. Representative Denny Rehberg who received 44.6% of the vote.[1][2]

Democratic primary

Candidate

Republican primary

Candidates

  • Denny Rehberg, U.S. Representative, former Lieutenant Governor and former State Representative[3]
  • Dennis Teske, farmer[4]

Withdrew

Endorsements

Denny Rehberg

Results

The Republican primary was held on June 5, 2012.

U.S. Senate election in Montana Republican primary[6]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Denny Rehberg 105,632 76.2
Republican Dennis Teske 33,079 23.8
Total votes 138,711 100

General election

Candidates

  • Dan Cox (Libertarian), retired businessman[7]
  • Denny Rehberg (Republican), U.S. Representative, former Lieutenant Governor and former State Representative
  • Jon Tester (Democratic), incumbent U.S. Senator and former State Senator

Debates

Three debates are scheduled, including one with the Libertarian candidate whose ultimate influence on the race remains uncertain.[8] The first, between Rehberg and Tester, was held on October 8, 2012 at 7 p.m. at Petro Theatre at the MSU Billings University campus. The debate was televised live by Montana PBS andbroadcast on KEMC/Yellowstone Public Radio and streamed on the Gazette’s website. It was moderated by Steve Prosinski, editor of The Gazette, with questions from a panel of political reporters. Representatives from the Associated Students of Montana State University Billings, the student government, served as timekeepers.[9]

Campaign

Former president of the Montana Senate and farmer Jon Tester was elected with 49.2% of the vote in 2006, defeating incumbent Conrad Burns.

As of June 30, 2011, Jon Tester had saved $2.34 million in campaign funds. Tester has been accused by Republican Denny Rehberg's senate campaign of depending on financial contributions from Wall Street banking executives and movie stars.[10]

On February 5, 2011, U.S. Representative Denny Rehberg announced his intention to run for the U.S. Senate.[3] Steve Daines had announced he would seek the Republican nomination on November 13, 2010,[11] but just before Rehberg's announcement he dropped out of the primary and announced he would instead seek the Republican nomination for Montana's at-large congressional district in 2012.[5]

As of early July 2010, Denny Rehberg had saved $1.5 million of an original $2 million in campaign funds. Rehberg accused Democrat Jon Tester's senate campaign of depending on financial contributions from Wall Street banking executives and Hollywood while Rehberg's campaign relies primarily on in state donations. Tester's campaign countered that Rehberg has been funded by petroleum special interests and Wall Street.[10]

The National Republican Senatorial Committee aired an attack ad against Jon Tester that mistakenly included a digitally manipulated photo of Tester (who has only two fingers on his left hand) with full sets of fingers.[12] Another ad against Tester, from the Karl Rove group Crossroads GPS, falsely asserted that Tester had voted in favor of Environmental Protection Agency regulation of farm dust.[13] In fact, Tester had praised the EPA for not attempting such a regulation.[14] The vote cited in the anti-Tester ad concerned currency exchange rates.[15]

In early October 2012, Crossroads GPS announced it would launch a $16 million advertising buy in national races, of which four were this and three other Senate elections.[16]

Candidate (party) Receipts Disbursements Cash on hand Debt
Jon Tester (D) $11,699,935 $10,377,126 $1,334,858 $0
Denny Rehberg (R) $8,420,655 $7,249,285 $1,171,369 $0
Source: Federal Election Commission[17][18]

Top contributors

  • Although organizations are listed here, it is illegal for corporations to contribute to federal campaigns. Only political action committees (PACs) and individuals may contribute to federal candidates and in limited amounts. These lists actually indicate aggregate contributions from the organizations' PACs, their individual members or employees or owners, and those individuals' immediate families.[19][20]
Jon Tester Contribution Denny Rehberg Contribution
League of Conservation Voters $82,332 Alliance Resource Partners $36,500
Visa Inc. $47,400 Exxon Mobil $29,500
JPMorgan Chase & Co $47,000 Las Vegas Sands $25,000
Thornton & Naumes $46,600 Mewbourne Oil Co $25,000
WPP Group $38,350 Murray Energy $24,068
Blackstone Group $34,000 Devon Energy $20,400
Girardi & Keese $30,000 Arch Coal $19,000
Pederson Group $29,500 Yellowstone Bank $17,500
Comcast Corp $28,500 Marathon Oil $13,750
First Interstate BancSystem $28,400 Koch Industries $13,500

Top industries

[21]

Jon Tester Contribution Denny Rehberg Contribution
Lawyers/Law firms $1,084,445 Oil & Gas $327,969
Retired $534,716 Financial Institutions $277,474
Lobbyists $506,931 Retired $268,693
Financial Institutions $438,763 Leadership PACs $267,000
Leadership PACs $345,750 Mining $169,318
Commercial Banks $299,818 Lobbyists $150,050
Real Estate $280,945 Real Estate $121,080
Insurance $211,009 Misc Finance $94,655
Misc Finance $188,750 Lawyers/Law Firms $89,338
Health Professionals $181,483 Republican/Conservative $76,855

Predictions

Source Ranking As of
The Cook Political Report[22] Tossup November 1, 2012
Sabato's Crystal Ball[23] Lean R November 5, 2012
Rothenberg Political Report[24] Tossup November 2, 2012
Real Clear Politics[25] Tossup November 5, 2012


Polling

Poll source Date(s)
administered
Sample
size
Margin of
error
Jon
Tester (D)
Denny
Rehberg (R)
Other Undecided
Public Policy Polling November 10–13, 2010 1,176 ±2.9% 46% 48% 6%
Mason-Dixon March 14–16, 2011 625 ±4.0% 46% 45% 9%
Public Policy Polling June 16–19, 2011 819 ±3.4% 45% 47% 8%
Public Policy Polling November 28–30, 2011 1,625 ±2.4% 45% 47% 4% 5%
Rasmussen Reports February 22, 2012 500 ±4.5% 44% 47% 6% 3%
Rasmussen Reports April 2, 2012 500 ±4.5% 44% 47% 9%
Public Policy Polling April 26–29, 2012 934 ±3.2% 48% 43% 9%
Rasmussen Reports May 2, 2012 450 ±5.0% 43% 53% 2% 2%
Rasmussen Reports June 18, 2012 450 ±5.0% 47% 49% 2% 2%
Rasmussen Reports August 20, 2012 500 ±4.5% 43% 47% 5% 5%
Public Policy Polling September 10–11, 2012 656 ±3.8% 45% 43% 8% 3%
Mason-Dixon September 17–19, 2012 625 ±4.0% 45% 48% 1% 6%
MSU October 9, 2012 477 ±4.6% 40% 43% 5% 12%
Public Policy Polling October 8–10, 2012 737 ±3.6% 45% 43% 8% 4%
Rasmussen Reports October 14, 2012 500 ±4.5% 48% 48% 3% 2%
Public Policy Polling/LCV October 15–16, 2012 806 ±3.5% 46% 44% 7% 3%
Pharos Research October 19–21, 2012 828 ±3.4% 48% 46% 5%
Pharos Research October 26–28, 2012 799 ±3.5% 48% 47% 5%
Rasmussen Reports October 29, 2012 500 ±4.5% 49% 48% 2% 2%
Mason-Dixon/Gazette State Bureau October 29–31, 2012 625 4.0% 45% 49% 1% 5%
Public Policy Polling November 2–3, 2012 836 3.4% 48% 46% 4% 2%
Hypothetical polling
Poll source Date(s)
administered
Sample
size
Margin of
error
Jon
Tester (D)
Steve
Daines (R)
Other Undecided
Public Policy Polling November 10–13, 2010 1,176 ±2.9% 48% 37% 14%
Poll source Date(s)
administered
Sample
size
Margin of
error
Jon
Tester (D)
Neil
Livingstone (R)
Other Undecided
Public Policy Polling November 10–13, 2010 1,176 ±2.9% 46% 35% 19%
Poll source Date(s)
administered
Sample
size
Margin of
error
Jon
Tester (D)
Marc
Racicot (R)
Other Undecided
Public Policy Polling November 10–13, 2010 1,176 ±2.9% 42% 49% 9%

Results

United States Senate election in Montana, 2012
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Jon Tester (incumbent) 236,123 48.58% -0.58%
Republican Denny Rehberg 218,051 44.86% -3.43%
Libertarian Dan Cox 31,892 6.56% +4.01%
Write-ins
Margin of victory 18,072 3.72% +2.84%
Turnout 486,066
Democratic hold Swing

*Note: The ±% column reflects the change in the percent of the votes won by each party from the 2006 Senate election. Neither the vote shares nor turnout figure account for write-ins.

By county

County Tester Votes Rehberg Votes Cox Votes Total
Beaverhead31.84%1,53259.77%2,8768.4%4044,812
Big Horn67.39%3,14128.08%1,3094.53%2114,661
Blaine63.88%1,83431.24%8974.88%1402,871
Broadwater33.01%99557.47%1,7329.52%2873,014
Carbon45.9%2,69147.55%2,7886.55%3845,863
Carter15.74%12577.58%6166.68%53794
Cascade52.47%18,24641.96%14,5895.57%1,93634,771
Chouteau48.19%1,37446.33%1,3215.47%1562,851
Custer43.21%2,28349.31%2,6618.38%4525,396
Daniels32.6%32760.52%6076.88%691,003
Dawson35.46%1,57156.52%2,5048.01%3554,430
Deer Lodge69.55%3,12223.37%1,0497.08%3184,489
Fallon29.78%42259.28%84010.94%1551,407
Fergus33.94%2,06358.12%3,5337.95%4836,709
Flathead37.17%16,22355.38%24,1717.45%3,25243,646
Gallatin51.63%24,78142.47%20,3865.9%2,83448,001
Garfield14.31%10179.04%5586.66%47708
Glacier69.6%3,11824.84%1,1135.56%2494,480
Golden Valley36.25%17457.5%2756.25%30480
Granite38.53%65752.49%8958.97%1531,705
Hill58.93%4,06034.27%2,3616.81%4696,890
Jefferson40.92%2,68551.65%3,3897.42%4876,561
Judith Basin35.94%44157.13%7016.93%851,227
Lake49.25%6,56142.92%5,7177.83%1,04313,321
Lewis and Clark54.34%18,18940.17%13,4465.49%1,83933,474
Liberty40.48%1,34153.12%1,7606.09%611,002
Lincoln34.62%3,09156.90%5,0808.48%7578,928
Madison33.2%1,51658.91%2,6907.88%3604,566
McCone32.9%33261.05%6166.05%611,009
Meagher34.93%34255.57%5449.5%93979
Mineral42.66%86647.44%9639.9%2012,030
Missoula63.49%36,48831.64%18,1844.87%2,79957,471
Musselshell28.58%68461.14%1,46310.28%2462,393
Park48.22%4,26043.94%3,8827.84%6938,835
Petroleum24.41%7367.56%2028.03%24299
Phillips27.2%60749.69%1,3557.17%1602,717
Powder River23.32%23970.15%7196.54%671,025
Powell41.75%1,16751.2%1,4317.05%1972,795
Prairie33.33%23659.32%4207.34%52708
Ravalli38.65%8,60253.87%11,9907.48%1,66622,258
Richland30.18%1,40662.95%2,9336.87%3204,659
Roosevelt61.41%2,26933.42%1,2355.17%1913,695
Rosebud48.0%1,70444.45%1,5787.55%2683,550
Sanders34.31%2,04454.04%3,21911.65%6945,957
Sheridan42.23%81251.74%9956.03%1161,923
Silver Bow69.29%11,67324.62%4,1486.09%1,02616,847
Stillwater36.66%1,73256.84%2,6846.52%3084,724
Sweet Grass31.19%66162.67%1,3286.13%1302,119
Teton40.48%1,34153.12%1,7606.4%2123,313
Toole34.01%72157.03%1,2098.96%1902,120
Treasure33.98%15754.55%25211.47%53462
Valley44.98%1,74946.91%1,8248.1%3153,888
Wheatland36.79%36556.35%5596.85%68992
Wibaux27.39%14962.32%33910.29%56544
Yellowstone47.15%32,56546.44%32,0776.42%4,43269,074

Source:[26][27]

See also

References

  1. Johnson, Charles S. (June 19, 2010). "Speculation on 2012 elections in high gear". Billings Gazette. Retrieved November 21, 2010.
  2. "Montana". The New York Times.
  3. 1 2 Johnson, Charles S. (February 5, 2011). "It's official: Rehberg says he's taking on Tester". Billings Gazette. Retrieved February 5, 2011.
  4. Dennison, Mike (January 19, 2012). "Political unknown drops into U.S. Senate race". Billings Gazette. Retrieved January 20, 2012.
  5. 1 2 Johnson, Charles S. (February 3, 2011). "Steve Daines Announces 2012 U.S. Senate Run Against Jon Tester". Billings Gazette. Retrieved February 3, 2011.
  6. "2012 STATEWIDE PRIMARY ELECTION CANVASS" (PDF). Secretary of State of Montana. Archived from the original (PDF) on January 21, 2013. Retrieved September 24, 2012.
  7. "Libertarian joins U.S. Senate race". Billings Gazette. March 8, 2012. Retrieved March 9, 2012.
  8. 1 2 Mike Dennison (July 15, 2011). "Rehberg raises $900K in 3 months, trails Tester in U.S. Senate money". missoulian.com. Retrieved July 25, 2011.
  9. Debbas, Jessica (November 13, 2010). "Steve Daines Announces 2012 U.S. Senate Run Against Jon Tester". KTVM-TV. Retrieved November 21, 2010.
  10. Gouras, Matt (September 30, 2010). "GOP attack ad shows five-fingered Tester shaking Obama's hand". Missoulian TV. Retrieved November 2, 2011.
  11. McAuliff, Michael (November 11, 2011). "Ad By Crossroads, Karl Rove's Outfit, Yanked Off Air For Being False (UPDATE)". Huffington Post. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
  12. Drajem, Mark (October 17, 2011). "EPA Says U.S. Rule on Farm Dust Won't Be Tightened After Review". Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
  13. "U.S. Senate Roll Call Votes 112th Congress – 1st Session, Vote No. 157". United States Senate. October 6, 2011. Retrieved November 12, 2011.
  14. Haberman, Maggie (October 2, 2012). "Crossroads launches $16 million buy in Senate, presidential contests". Politico.com. Retrieved October 2, 2012.
  15. Campaign Finances
  16. Campaign Finances
  17. OpenSecrets.org web site states "The organizations themselves did not donate, rather the money came from the organizations' PACs, their individual members or employees or owners, and those individuals' immediate families."
  18. [http://www.opensecrets.org/races/contrib.php?cycle=2012&id=MTS1 Center for Responsive Politics
  19. finances by industry
  20. "2012 Senate Race Ratings for November 1, 2012". The Cook Political Report. Retrieved August 28, 2018.
  21. "2012 Senate". Sabato's Crystal Ball. Retrieved August 28, 2018.
  22. "2012 Senate Ratings". Senate Ratings. The Rothenberg Political Report. Retrieved August 28, 2018.
  23. "2012 Elections Map - Battle for the Senate 2012". Real Clear Politics. Retrieved August 28, 2018.
  24. "2012 Statewide General Election Canvass" (PDF). Montana Secretary of State. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 5, 2016. Retrieved February 4, 2016.
  25. "2012 General Election Results By County". Montana Secretary of State. Retrieved February 10, 2018.
Official campaign websites
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