More than half of Minnesota voters now have an unfavorable opinion of Norm Coleman following the protracted recount for his Senate seat, and it's harming his prospects for a future Gubernatorial campaign.
52% of voters in the state view Coleman negatively with 38% having a positive take on him. His numbers are predictably polarized with 72% of Republicans but only 10% of Democrats saying they like him, and independents split 49/37 against him as well.
Coleman trails two out of the three potential Democratic candidates we tested him against for Governor. Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak led 43-37 and former Senator Mark Dayton led 41-39 while Coleman held the 42-34 advantage against House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher.
54% of respondents indicated that the way Coleman handled the recount made them less likely to support him in any future campaign, while 26% said it made them more likely to do so and 20% said it made no difference.
Coleman's relative competitiveness against the trio of Democrats we tested shows that it's not impossible that he could succeed in a future campaign, but it's never good when a politician trails someone with considerably less name recognition than him and there's not much doubt he's been hurt by dragging out the recount. You have to wonder how much better his future prospects would be if he had conceded in January and voters perceived him as taking the high road for the good of the state.
Full results here