Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Kaine leads Allen by small margin

Barack Obama may have taken a step back in Virginia over the last couple of months but the state of the Senate race remains unchanged: Tim Kaine holds a slight lead over George Allen. This month's poll comes out at 46-43.

Kaine (87-7) and Allen (87-6) have basically identical leads with voters of their own party. What tips the balance toward Kaine is that he leads 44-33 with independent voters. That advantage for Kaine with independents is becoming a trend in our polling. In May Kaine had a 45-40 advantage with them and a 46-44 lead overall.

It's not that independent voters are in love with Kaine: his 43/38 favorability breakdown with them is decent but not earth shattering. But they really don't like Allen. Just 20% rate him positively to 47% with a negative opinion. That breakdown was 32/47 when we polled in May, 36/41 in late February and 38/45 in November. Allen does not have a good image with independent voters in Virginia and that's why he's down with them right now.

There seems to be a general thought that this race will move in whatever direction the national political winds do over the next 15 months and change so it's interesting that Kaine has gained a point on his lead over Allen even as Barack Obama's advantage on Mitt Romney has declined by 7 points. At least right now those races aren't moving in concert. For now that's good news for Kaine- Obama's not dragging him down even as his popularity flags. But longer term it could be good news for Allen too- if Obama's numbers see a recovery that doesn't necessarily mean Kaine's all the sudden going to have an 8 point lead either.

On the extremely off chance that George Allen were to lose the Republican nomination to Tea Party candidate Jamie Radtke, Kaine would have a 16 point lead at 47-31. GOP primary numbers we'll release tomorrow shows the chances of that to be extremely minuscule though.

Full results here


Anonymous said...

When will you release the Republican primary numbers for New Mexico, North Carolina and New Jersey ?

Anonymous said...

It looks as if the Senatorial election of 2010 is going to look much like 2006 in result -- basically with the result of a bare Democratic majority likely to hold until 2016, when several winners of 2010 in some anomalous states become vulnerable. Virginia being close again suggests the pattern.

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