Inertia Benefits Deval

 A new Rasmussen poll for FOX25 has the race for governor essentially unchanged since a month ago. Patrick leads Baker 38% - 32%, compared to 41%-34% in June, while Cahill ticked up from 16% to 17%, and undecided rose from 9% to 12%. (The poll doesn't include Jill Stein.)

That gibes with what I've heard about recent internal polling by a couple of the campaigns.

The lack of movement, despite Baker running his first ads, among other developments, probably reflects the oft-repeated maxim that in Massachusetts nobody pays any attention to politics between Memorial Day and Labor Day.

It also seems to confirm what most close observers have thought: the Globe poll with Cahill in single digits was probably an outlier, and he remains -- so far -- a serious factor despite all the ads attacking him.

It has to benefit Patrick that he's gotten a month closer to the election without losing his lead, and without spending any significant money. The race is very, very far from over, but so far we have yet to see any instance in which the Baker campaign has shown any ability to gain support. 

A major problem for Baker, I suspect, will be convincing the Republican Governors Association to continue pouring money into the race, if he's still stuck in the low 30s in September. The RGA has a lot of money, but it also has a lot of competitive races to fund. It made sense for them to spend money early battering Cahill -- there weren't that many other races where they could potentially have a big effect early -- but the fall is another story.

If they cut bait on Baker, not only does he lose a major source of ad spending, but he'll have to run attack ads himself, out of his own and the MassGOP accounts. He'd much rather have those coming from a third party. And he certainly isn't likely to beat the incumbent without running negative ads.

So, in summation: no change, advantage Patrick

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