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Karl Rove vindicated?

From NBC's Mark Murray
Here's the reason why Karl Rove and many establishment Republicans did not want Christine O'Donnell to win last week's GOP Senate primary in Delaware.

A new CNN/Time poll finds Chris Coons (D) leading Christine O'Donnell (R) by 16 points among likely voters in Delaware's Senate race, 55%-39%.

But if Mike Castle, beaten by O'Donnell in last week's primary, were the GOP nominee, he would have an 18-point lead over Coons, 55%-37%.

That's a 34-point swing.

So that's the good news for Democrats in the new batch of CNN/Time polls. Here's the bad news: In Colorado's Senate race, Ken Buck (R) is leading Michael Bennet (D) among likelies, 49%-44%; in Pennsylvania's Senate race, Pat Toomey (R) is ahead of Joe Sestak (D) by a similar margin; and in Wisconsin, Ron Johnson (R) leads Russ Feingold (D), 51%-45%.

Yet here is the silver lining for Dems in these contests: Among registered voters, their candidates are either ahead or tied. Which means one thing: the higher the Dem turnout, the better their candidates will do.

The polls were conducted Sept. 17-21, and -- for the likely voters -- they have a margin of error of plus-minus 3.5% in CO, DE, PA, and plus-minus 3.0% in Wisconsin.