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Frank Caprio Sees Slip in Polls After Obama "Shove It" Comment

Rhode Island Democratic gubernatorial candidate Frank Caprio answers a question during a televised debate Tuesday, Oct. 26, 2010, in Providence, R.I. AP Photo/Stew Milne

Two days after telling President Obama to "shove it," Rhode Island Democratic gubernatorial candidate Frank Caprio may have seen a slide in his standing, according to an NBC 10-Quest Research study released Wednesday night.

Caprio trails independent candidate Lincoln Chafee and Republican John Robitaille in the three-way competition, with 25 percent support, according to the poll. Chafee leads with 35 percent, while Robitaille follows with 28 percent.

The poll suggests a significant drop for Caprio, who was leading the contest with 37 percent support in an October 12 survey by the same organization.

NBC 10 told Hotsheet that most (but not all) of the poll was taken after Caprio's "shove it" comments.

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Caprio's recent downslide could reflect the heated remarks he recently directed toward the president: Upon learning that President Obama would not be endorsing him (or any other candidate) for Rhode Island governor, Caprio memorably said in a radio interview that Mr. Obama could "take his endorsement and really shove it."

A majority of voters - 57 percent -- said they were not influenced by the incident. But 36 percent of those surveyed on the matter said that they would be less likely to vote for Caprio as a result of the remarks. Just seven percent of respondents said they would be more likely to vote for the Democrat as a result of the comments. (The report notes that only 456 of the 523 likely voters sampled were asked this question.)

Caprio said in an interview with NBC-10 that he didn't think his comments were responsible for a slip in popularity. "Again, this is about the people of Rhode Island," he said. "The race has been close all the way through and it's anybody's ball game."


Lucy Madison
Lucy Madison is a political reporter for CBSNews.com. You can read more of her posts here. Follow Hotsheet on Facebook and Twitter.