Unlikely Voter

Conservative views on polls, science, technology, and policy

Mixed news for Burr, despite a lead

PPP released its poll on the North Carolina Senate race that I’ve been waiting for since the twitter feed hinted the poll was coming.

Richard Burr leads, but it could be the race tilts slightly toward Elaine Marshall in the long run.

It probably seems odd that when Burr leads by 5, that I’d say it’s not necessarily going well for him, but it isn’t. He only leads 38-33, with Libertarian Michael Beitler at 10. 38 is well below the 50% traditional cutoff for incumbents. I’ve written off incumbents polling higher than Burr is managing to get.

PPP raises the point that the favorability ratings tell an interesting story. Burr is remarkably poorly known for an incumbent with 28% having no opinion. Despite that he’s still underwater at 39 unfavorable to 34 favorable. Meanwhile Marshall is +2 at 22-20, with a 58% majority having no opinion.

As things stand, Burr has to improve his own standing while defining Marshall negatively, while Marshall only has to define herself, because she can be content to let Burr stand in the negative. That gives Burr the tougher job going forward.

But he is starting out ahead, and that of course counts for something. Especially when I think this race could get very ugly, very fast if both candidates start throwing mud to try to crawl over the other.


One Response to “Mixed news for Burr, despite a lead”

  1. earlgrey says:

    Hey Neil,

    I like Rasmussen’s numbers on this one better :) Sometimes, people like me just have to do a little cherry picking to get through the day.

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