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Texas Senate: Cornyn Opens Double Digit Lead

United States Senator John Cornyn has opened a seventeen percentage point lead in his bid for re-election. The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey in the state find Cornyn leading Democratic state legislator Rick Noriega 52% to 35%. That’s a significant improvement for the incumbent from a month ago when his lead dwindled to four percentage points.

Cornyn is supported by 86% of Republicans and has a two-to-one edge among unaffiliated voters. Last month, his lead among the unaffiliateds was just four percentage points. Noreiga attracts 72% of Democrats, down from 81% a month ago.

The Democrat leads among voters under 30, reflecting a nationwide trend. He is competitive among those who earn less than $40,000 a year. However, Cornyn has the advantage among adults over 30 and those with annual incomes topping $40,000.

Incumbents who poll below 50% are generally considered vulnerable. Cornyn has moved slightly above that threshold, but many of his colleagues remain in challenging races. At least ten Republican Senate seats are potentially in play for Democrats including seats in Alaska, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oregon, New Mexico, Colorado, Mississippi, Minnesota, Virginia, and Kentucky. So far, just two Democratic incumbents are polling below 50%--Mary Landrieu in Louisiana and Frank Lautenberg in New Jersey.

In Texas, Cornyn is viewed favorably by 56% of the state’s likely voters, up six points from a month ago. He is viewed unfavorably by 31%.

Noreiga earns positive reviews from 43% and negative assessments from 39%. Those figures are little changed.

Texas voters don’t have firm opinions of either candidate, suggesting limited knowledge of who these men really are. Just 16% have a Very Favorable opinion of the incumbent and 14% have a Very Unfavorable view. Eleven percent (11%) have a Very Favorable opinion of Noreiga while 17% have a Very Unfavorable opinion.

Thirty-four percent (34%) of voters say the state’s Republican Governor, Rick Perry, is doing a good or excellent job. Twenty-seven percent (27%) say he is doing a poor job. Those figures have changed little.

Forty percent (40%) say President George W. Bush is doing a good or an excellent job while another 40% rate his performance as poor.

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Texas Safe Republican

Latest RR Poll

RR Poll Avg.

Ras Mkts.

In Trade

2002 Results

Cornyn (R)

55%

51%

55%

Noriega (D)

40%

40%

43%

This telephone survey of 500 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports June 2, 2008. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

See Methodology


Texas Trends: Cornyn vs. Noriega

Date

Cornyn

Noriega

10/21/2008

55%

40%

09/29/2008

50%

43%

08/21/2008

48%

37%

07/30/2008

47%

37%

06/25/2008

48%

35%

06/02/2008

52%

35%

05/01/2008

47%

43%


Favorable Ratings for Senate Candidates in Texas

 

Cornyn

Noriega

Very Favorable

26%

18%

Somewhat Favorable

33%

25%

Somewhat Unfavorable

23%

24%

Very Unfavorable

9%

18%

Not Sure

9%

16%


About Rasmussen Reports

Rasmussen Reports is an electronic publishing firm specializing in the collection, publication, and distribution of public opinion polling information.

The Rasmussen Reports ElectionEdge™ Premium Service for Election 2008 offers the most comprehensive public opinion coverage ever provided for a Presidential election.

Scott Rasmussen, president of Rasmussen Reports, has been an independent pollster for more than a decade.