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Poll: Close Race To Succeed Weiner's District Seat

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) -- A new poll shows it will be a tight race for former Democratic Rep. Anthony Weiner's 9th congressional district seat.

A Siena Poll released Wednesday shows that Democrat David Weprin leads Republican Robert Turner 48 to 42 percent.

LINK: Read The Full Siena Poll

The district, which covers parts of Brooklyn and Queens, has never elected a Republican.

The poll also looked at the influence of candidate endorsements by politicians and newspapers.

It found that about twice as many voters say they are more likely to support a candidate who is endorsed by Senator Charles Schumer, Governor Andrew Cuomo or former Mayor Ed Koch.

"One of the people whose endorsement really does matter a lot is former Mayor Ed Koch," said Siena pollster Steve Greenberg. "Ed Koch, a Democrat, has endorsed Republican Turner in this race and voters like Ed Koch and say his endorsement matters."

But people surveyed said that endorsements by three of New York City's daily newspapers wouldn't help in their decision.

Greenberg says the key to who wins this election will be voter turnout.

"Which campaign will do a better job of identifying their voters and getting their voters to the polls," said Greenberg. "Because as we know, special elections tend to have a very low voter turnout. Probably fewer than 20 percent of the registered voters in the 9th congressional district will actually go to the polls and vote."

By 2 to 1, voters also wanted their representative to vote for a debt ceiling law
and more than 3/4 said they did not like the direction the country is taking.

The poll of 501 likely voters was conducted August 3-8 by phone and had a sampling margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.

Turner is a retired media executive who ran unsuccessfully against Weiner in the general election last year.

Assemblyman Weprin is a former New York City councilman who ran unsuccessfully for the Democratic nomination to be comptroller in 2009.

He was elected to the Assembly in 2010 after serving in the City Council for eight years.

Weiner resigned in June in the wake of a Twitter sexting scandal.

The special election on September 13 will also include six Assembly districts with vacancies that need to be filled.

Those are in Oneida County, Erie County, Brooklyn, Manhattan and two in Queens.

Who do you think is the better candidate? Sound off below in our comments section...

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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