Tea Bagger in CA GOP Senate Primary Trails Badly In Three-Way Race; And ‘Demon Sheep’ Failed: Ad’s Target Leads All

photo-deprmon-shpreepOn ABC’s “This Week” in February, George Will predicted that the tea bagger candidate in the California Republican primary, Chuch DeVore, would beat out the moderates, Tom “Demon Sheep” Campbell and Carly Fiorina in the election on June 8:

TAPPER: George … I’m wondering if you could comment on the fact that Republicans are now running to the right for this mantle of fiscal conservative. Certainly that’s something we see in the Tea Party movement. We’re seeing it now in California, as well.

WILL: Sure, because California has a closed primary. Republicans will vote in it. And about 15 percent of the decline to states will vote in it. That’s — Fiorina running an ad against Tom Campbell, who was running for governor until enticed back into the Senate race, I think by Meg Whitman, who’s running for governor and really doesn’t want two former Silicon Valley CEOs running in tandem on the ticket, Meg Whitman coming from eBay, Carly Fiorina from Hewlett-Packard.

That said, it’s the dog that didn’t bark there. There’s another candidate there, and he’s Chuck DeVore. He’s the conservative in the race. And I’ll make you a small wager that he is the Republican nominee, neither of those two.

Too bad no one took George Will up on that bet. Two recent polls show DeVore trailing Campbell and Fiorina — badly. The polls also show that while Fiorina’s “demon sheep” ad against Campbell — in which she asserted that Campbell, one of the few principled conservatives in the state, not to mention the nation, is a FCNO, or fiscal conservative in name only — made a big splash among corporate media pundits in D.C., it not only failed to help Fiorina in California but its outlandish+ depiction of Campbell, may have backfired by costing her support among centrist Republicans in the state.

In the Los Angeles Times/USC poll released this month, DeVore trails wiht 9 percent:

In the Republican Senate contest, former U.S. Rep. Tom Campbell held a slim lead over one-time Hewlett-Packard chief Carly Fiorina, 29 percent to 25 percent. Coming in a distant third was Orange County Assemblyman Chuck DeVore, at 9 percent.

At this early stage of the campaign, Boxer has a comfortable cushion over a generic Republican, 48 percent to 34 percent, as she seeks her fourth term. Although somewhat diminished in popularity, Boxer maintains a positive impression among California voters, the poll found.

In a Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) poll out late last month, DeVore trailed with 8 percent:

The Republican primary race for U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer’s seat has tightened since January, when Tom Campbell led both Carly Fiorina and Chuck DeVore among Republican likely voters (27 percent Campbell, 16 percent Fiorina, 8 percent DeVore). Today, Campbell and Fiorina are in a close race (24 percent Fiorina, 23 percent Campbell), and DeVore’s level of support is unchanged (8 percent). In this campaign — which has seen little advertising — the largest percentage of likely voters (44 percent) is undecided, similar to January (48 percent).

Boxer, who has not begun campaigning, has at least two factors working in her favor for the fall. The LAT/USC poll found a 17 point lead among Californians who say they will vote to reelect their congressional representatives who voted for health care reform, as Boxer did.

Also, a ballot initiative on the November that would legalize marijuana in the state will likely energize the Democrats’ young, liberal base.