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Why McAuliffe can’t rest easy


What should be the final polls of the 2013 Virginia election are now out, and both show a race that still favors the Democrats. PPP Polls’ final batch of numbers for the statewide races finds Terry McAuliffe in front of Ken Cuccinelli by seven percentage points, while Quinnipiac puts the race a tad closer, with McAuliffe up by six. PPP shows Libertarian Robert Sarvis flirting with Russ Potts territory, clocking in with just 4 percent support. Quinnipiac has Sarvis at 8 percent.

So in PPP’s view, what is driving its figures? Anger:

Both candidates are deeply unpopular with Cuccinelli posting a 39/52 favorability rating, and McAuliffe’s coming in at 36/52. But among voters who dislike both candidates – and they account for 15% of the electorate – McAuliffe leads Cuccinelli 61/16. Those voters who don’t like either major party standard bearer are responsibly for McAuliffe’s entire lead in this poll.

And that, folks, is why McAuliffe ought to be pacing the floors in a sleepless sweat. That kind of negativity is very hard to sustain. It is fluid, too, and those angry voters could just as easily decide to abandon McAuliffe on a whim. PPP has McAuliffe’s negatives just as high as Cuccinelli’s — that’s new, too. Add that to the mix and you understand why he brought in every marquee Democrat he could this past week and weekend. He needs them a lot more than they need him.

[Continue reading Norman Leahy’s post at]

Norman Leahy blogs at Bearing Drift. The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.



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Norman Leahy · November 1, 2013

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