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« Strategy Memo: Ich Bin Ein Obama | Blog Home Page | Dole, Perdue Lead »

Durbin Cruising

With his home-state colleague running for President this year, and with a nearly eight-to-one cash on hand advantage over his opponent, one might be forgiven for forgetting that Illinois Senator Dick Durbin is running for re-election this year. But he is, and a new poll conducted for his opponent shows the two-term Democrat cruising toward a third term.

The survey, conducted by Southern Outreach for Dr. Steve Sauerberg's campaign, polled 1,500 likely voters on 7/12 for a margin of error of +/- 3%. The sample was made up of 53% Democrats, 35% Republicans and 12% independents or other party affiliations. Durbin and Sauerberg, the Republican nominee, were tested.

General Election Matchup
Durbin...........52
Sauerberg....35

Durbin has polled well in both his races to date, racking up 56% of the vote in 1996 and 60% in 2002. But as a point of personal pride, Durbin has two other goals to meet: In 2004, aided by a presidential election turnout, Barack Obama scored nearly 3.6 million votes, 70% of those cast. If Durbin has any hope of taking back bragging rights, he'll have to beat one of Obama's two scores.

Of course, it could be harder for Durbin to reach that mark as Obama heads the ballot this year. Even if Durbin does beat Obama's 2004 total, the presidential contender will probably win his state by a wider margin than Durbin will win re-election.