Local Politics

Dole Holds Commanding Lead Over Senate Challengers

Posted April 15, 2008

— U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole enjoys a double-digit lead over two potential Democratic opponents, according to a recent poll.

Rasmussen Reports surveyed 500 likely voters in North Carolina on April 10 and found that Dole would defeat state Sen. Kay Hagan, D-Guilford, by 52 to 39 percent. Dole would defeat Chapel Hill financial adviser Jim Neal 51 to 37 percent, according to the poll.

Hagan and Neal face off in the May 6 primary for the right to face Dole in November.

Dole leads Neal by double-digits among men and women. She has an 18-point lead over Hagan among men, but a 9-point lead among women.

Dole also leads among the critical bloc of unaffiliated voters, the poll shows. People not registered as Republicans or Democrats favor her over Hagan 48 to 36 percent, while Neal trails among unaffiliated voters 43 to 32 percent.

Voters younger than 30 favor Hagan over Dole 45 to 39 percent. In a head-to-head match, Neal and Dole would split young voters evenly, the poll shows.

The Iraq War and health care are two other areas where Democrats fare well against Dole, according to the poll.

A majority of respondents who rate the war as the most important issue facing the U.S. favor either Hagan or Neal against Dole. The health care issue is even more strongly tilted toward the Democrats, with more than two-thirds of those polled voting for Hagan or Neal.

Dole has a 61 percent favorable rating among North Carolina voters, while both Hagan and Neal's favorable ratings were in the mid-30s. About a third of the voters said they hadn't formed an opinion about either Democratic candidate.

The poll results have a margin of error of 4.5 percentage points.


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  • tmedlin Apr 15, 2008

    She's done TONS of work for the state of NC as well as the country - from education to veterans benefits to illegal aliens to environmental issues ... It's all been out there - she just doesn't run around like other Senators trying to grab camera time on the tube

  • discowhale Apr 15, 2008

    Who knew she was running? Seen any adds? Billboards?

    As to her doing a good job, I sent an e-mail to her office and Sen Burr's also. Never did hear from Mrs Doles crowd. I got a phone call from the Jr Senator's office.

  • baracus Apr 15, 2008

    "A survey of 500 people is hardly worth taking note of."

    Actually 500 is sufficient to give the +/- 4.5% margin of error the story noted with 95% confidence.

    I tend to think that the results are more reflective of the state's reddish hue than anything about Dole herself. You don't really hear much about her, good or bad, so I don't know what most would be basing their decision on. Although, I guess with the state of politics, not hearing anything bad about her might be good enough.

  • doodad Apr 15, 2008

    It's pretty easy to keep track of our NC senate and congressmen votes. Dole has done a good job.

    We need a new governor in NC. I am leaning towards Bob Orr so far based on his ideas about illegal immigration reform. Most of our problems can be improved through state government. The last four years has been the pitts. It's way past time for Easley to go. Vote NO to Moore or Perdue or get more of the same. NOTHING!

  • Bruce Wayne Apr 15, 2008

    I agree on the issue of immigration. Mortgage crisis is based on an individuals choice. I am not paying to bail someone out of their bad decision. Job exportation is the capitalist market at work. State school system is just that, a state level issue. Actually it should a county/local issue.

    Can you say you really know what she is/is not doing? Or do just want to complain? Complaining is your right of course.

    Seems to me that New York has a Senator from Arkansas. Can we agree their needs to be term limits?

  • KevinUNC97 Apr 15, 2008

    Well Bruce Wayne....what is she doing about illegal immigration, mortgage crisis, job exportation, state school system? I'm happy to hear that she saved a couple of jobs, but NC needs a senator that works on macro levels because this state is about to go belly-up, and it seems that she doesn't even care. I am still trying to understand how she claims NC as her residence when her husband was a senator from Kansas? It makes absolutely no sense at all!

  • Bruce Wayne Apr 15, 2008

    Hardly seems like a personal favor Kevin. She probably had a staffer make a couple of calls. Sounds like it provided some jobs for some people. Maybe you have not heard of her doing anything because she does not make a fool of herself like so many other Senators.

  • KevinUNC97 Apr 15, 2008

    No wonder I haven't heard of her actually doing anything because she is too busy doing personal favors for her benefactors. I don't even know who is running against her, but we really do need a more effective and younger U.S. Senator.

  • mep Apr 15, 2008

    Yes, the 500 person sample is pretty small.
    Although I will vote for her! She was able to get my lab a meeting with the Pentagon's number 2 man in charge to ensure our funding would continue.

  • naturegirl Apr 15, 2008

    A survey of 500 people is hardly worth taking note of.