Murray Holds Narrow Lead Over Rossi in WA Poll

Murray Holds Narrow Lead Over Rossi in WA Poll

By Scott Conroy - September 23, 2010

A SurveyUSA poll released on Thursday showed incumbent Democrat Patty Murray with a narrow two-point lead over Republican challenger Dino Rossi in the Washington Senate race.

Murray has a 50 percent to 48 percent advantage over Rossi in the poll of 609 likely voters. The poll has a margin of error is +/-4.1 percent.

After falling behind Rossi in polls conducted in mid to late August, including a SurveyUSA poll in which she trailed by seven, Murray has been trending upward in recent surveys. Murray has polled at 50 percent or higher in three other surveys conducted in the past two weeks and leads by 6.2 percent in the RCP Average.

Murray appears to be reaping the benefits of Washington's built-in advantage for Democrats, as she still trails Rossi by double digits among independents. Fifty-four percent of independents in the SurveyUSA poll support Rossi, while 41 percent back Murray.

The poll shows that Rossi has consolidated the support of 91 percent of Republican voters and also leads among men, 54 percent to 44 percent.

But Murray enjoys an even larger lead among women, 57 percent to 40 percent, while maintaining the support of 89 percent of Democrats.

Rossi leads Murray in eastern Washington, 52 percent to 47 percent, but Murray is ahead 52 percent to 45 percent in the Seattle area.

Rossi, a former state legislator who twice was the Republican nominee for governor in the state, recently launched his first attack ad against Murray and has signaled that he is ready to attack the Democratic incumbent more aggressively.

Murray began airing her first negative television spot against Rossi in early August.

Scott Conroy is a national political reporter for RealClearPolitics. He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @RealClearScott.

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