Dole Holds Lead In Her Internal Polling

Just a day after the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee reserved about $6 million in television airtime to run ads against Sen. Elizabeth Dole (R-N.C.), Dole’s campaign released internal polling showing her with a 15 point lead and high favorability ratings statewide.

The poll shows Dole leading Democratic state senator Kay Hagan, 51 to 36 percent with 6 percent going to Libertarian nominee Chris Cole and 7 percent undecided. According to the poll, 64 percent of respondents view her favorably and 63 percent approve of her job performance.

In a memo, Dole’s pollster emphasized the breadth of the incumbent’s support, writing that she wins a majority of voters in every North Carolina media market, polls strongly among both women and men, and doubles the support her opponent, state Sen. Kay Hagan, draws from Independent voters.

Dole’s poll was conducted by the Tarrance Group from July 7-9, surveying 550 likely statewide voters with a margin of error of 4.3 percent.

In spite of this polling data, Democrats seem well-equipped to give Dole a competitive race this fall. Dole has been up early on television for the last month airing ads highlighting her work fighting illegal immigration and tobacco buyout program. The early ad buy suggests she recognizes that she faces a competitive race.

“Despite them spending nearly $1 million on television ads re-introducing her, she’s still hovering around 50 percent, which is a dangerous level for an incumbent,” said Hagan spokeswoman Colleen Flanagan.

Earlier this month, Hagan announced that she had raised $1.6 million for the full second quarter (from April 1-June 30) and has $1.2 million left in her campaign account. Dole raised $2.1 million during that time frame, and now has banked $2.7 million.
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