Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Conway with a small lead

The race for the Democratic Senate nomination in Kentucky is a close one, but in an interesting twist the lesser known candidate currently has the slight lead. Jack Conway is up 37-33 on Dan Mongiardo.

Conway's 37% share of the vote may seem curious when you consider the fact that only 27% of primary voters have a favorable opinion of him. But when you combine the support from the folks who like him with that from the 27% of primary voters who dislike Mongiardo you have enough to give him the advantage at this stage.

58% of voters don't know enough about Conway to have formed an opinion of him, compared to just 33% who are ambivalent toward Mongiardo at this stage. 40% have a favorable opinion of the Lieutenant Governor to 27% unfavorable while 27% have a favorable view of the Attorney General to 15% unfavorable. One thing working to Conway's advantage is that he has a 48-34 lead with voters who like both of them.

Geography is playing one of the biggest roles in the candidates' support right now. In Conway's base around Louisville he leads 46-26, while Mongiardo has the 42-31 lead in eastern Kentucky. In other parts of the state the race is closer and there are higher undecideds.

This race seems more likely to be decided by personalities than issues or ideology and that's perhaps exemplified by the fact that Conway leads at this point with both liberals and conservatives, but trails with moderates.

These numbers just provide further confirmation that this is likely to be a close contest for the Democratic nomination.

Full results here

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