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« SurveyUSA: Christie Still Ahead | Blog Home Page | Ethics Committee Expands Rangel Investigation »

VA Gov Poll: McDonnell +9

Bob McDonnell (R) gets great news today, as the Washington Post's latest poll finds the former state attorney general leading his Democratic opponent, Creigh Deeds, by 9 points (Oct. 5-7, 1001 LV, MoE +/- 3%). This is a 5-point margin increase for the GOP nominee since the Post's last survey in mid-September.

McDonnell 53 (+2 vs. last poll, Sept. 17)
Deeds 44 (-3)

McDonnell now leads by 8.5 points in the RCP Average -- his largest lead since mid-September.

The poll is a blow to Deeds and national Democrats who have been pumping McDonnell's 1989 graduate school thesis through the airwaves for more than a month. They have been especially targeting women, though the Post poll finds Deeds with only a 50%-48% lead among females.

Also catastrophic to Deeds's numbers are his standing among independents and in Democrat-rich Northern Virginia. McDonnell leads independents by a 59%-38% margin, and his 17-point lead in NoVa has dwindled to just 5 points.

"Despite a concerted advertising campaign by Deeds about controversial views McDonnell expressed about working women in his thesis -- the one area where the Republican had appeared vulnerable -- the erosion of support among women and Northern Virginians suggests that the line of attack might have run its course," the Post's Helderman and Cohen write.

To carry on the recent trend of Democratic victories in the state, Deeds needs to win the kind of support President Obama received last year en route to a 6-point victory in the state. However, just 84% of those polled who said they voted for Obama now say they will vote for Deeds, while 13% say they support McDonnell. The GOP nominee also gets 91% of McCain voters.