Polls: Flake’s lead on Carmona shrinking

2012-09-26T13:00:00Z 2012-10-01T09:00:01Z Polls: Flake’s lead on Carmona shrinkingBrady McCombs, Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
September 26, 2012 1:00 pm  • 

Republican Jeff Flake is still leading Democrat Richard Carmona in the U.S. Senate race, but a pair of new polls suggest his margin is slipping.

A survey of 500 likely Arizona voters done by Rasmussen shows Flake with a 47 percent to 41 percent lead on Democrat Richard Carmona. Nine percent were undecided.

That’s a much tighter margin than the 16-percentage point lead he had in a  poll done by Rasmussen in late June of 500 likely Arizona voters. Rasmussen is considered a more Republican-leaning organization.

Carmona’s campaign also released an internal poll on Wednesday that shows Flake’s lead at 44-43 percent. The survey was done by Anzalone Liszt Research in a telephone survey of 600 likely Arizona voters done Sept. 18-23.

Another recent poll done by YouGov.com gave Flake a 43-37 percent lead on Carmona in a survey of 641 registered voters in Arizona conducted in early September.

These new polls come on the heels of a survey done by Public Policy Polling of nearly 1,000 likely Arizona voters in early September that showed Flake with a 44-43 percent lead on Carmona. PPP is considred a Democratic-leaning organization.

Dennis DeConcini was the last Democrat to win a U.S. Senate race in Arizona, and the state leans more Republican now. The 3.1 million registered voters are divided into thirds; Republicans lead with 36 percent of voters, followed by 33 percent independent voters and 30 percent Democrats.

Flake is considered the front-runner, thanks in large part to that 180,000 advantage in registered Republican voters. Two websites that specialize in making predictions — Sabato's Crystal Ball and the Rothenberg Political Report — have Arizona's Senate race "leaning" Republican. Those predictions fall short of the more bold, "Safe Republican" rating, but keep the race out of the "toss up" zone.

The New York Times’ Nate Silver has called the U.S. Senate a race a “realistic pickup opportunity” for the Democrats. But, he says the “fundamentals favor” Flake and gives Carmona only a 25 percent chance of winning, according to his calculations.

The general election is Nov. 6. Early ballots go out on Oct. 11.

Stay tuned to the Pueblo Politics blog throughout 2012 for news, updates and information about Arizona politics. You can follow Arizona Daily Star reporters Brady McCombs, Becky Pallack and Tim Steller on Twitter.

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The Arizona Daily Star's Pueblo Politics blog includes stories and related items from the Tucson and Pima County political scene written by Star reporters Becky Pallack and Joe Ferguson.

Have a political topic you would like to see in the blog or suggestions? Email Becky Pallack at bpallack@tucson.com and Joe Ferguson at jferguson@tucson.com

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