Local Politics

Poll: Dole opens lead on Hagan

Posted June 12, 2008 5:08 p.m. EDT

— U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole has opened a sizable lead over Democratic challenger Kay Hagan, according to a new WRAL News poll.

In the days after North Carolina's May 6 primary, a poll showed Dole and Hagan, a state senator from Guilford County, were in a dead heat in their U.S. Senate race.

But a survey of 500 likely voters on Tuesday by polling firm Rasmussen Reports shows Dole with a 53 to 39 percent lead over Hagan. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.

Dole leads among both men and women, in all age groups, almost all income brackets and among married voters, according to the poll. Hagan's only strengths were among unmarried people, those who don't go to church and those earning $20,000 to $40,000 a year.

Forty-five percent of voters polled have a favorable image of Hagan, but another 22 percent were undecided. Dole's favorable rating was at 62 percent in the poll.

Seventy percent of those surveyed also support drilling for oil off the Outer Banks, a position Dole has supported.