Saturday, August 16, 2008

Polling grist

A WDBJ poll shows the incumbent, Bob Goodlatte, with a large lead over challenger Sam Rasoul in the race for the 6th Congressional District. In the poll conducted by Survey USA of 592 likely voters (MOE ±4%), Goodlate has 59% to Rasoul's 30%. Seven percent are undecided and Janice Lee Allen barely registers at 3%.
Goodlatte, who is seeking his ninth term (he broke his promise to step down after six), has a huge name recognition advantage over Rasoul, which probably accounts for his lead with about 100 days left in the campaign. Rasoul has been conducting a grassroots voter contact campaign to counteract that advantage. While I wouldn't characterize Valley Republicans as "worried," they have certainly taken notice of Rasoul's aggressive campaign and the attention he's been getting. Goodlatte is having to get out and work like he hasn't in a long, long time.
The numbers will tighten after Labor Day when voters pay more attention to the congressional races which often gets lost in the media coverage of the presidential and senatorial contests.
As CCC predicted in earlier posts, Janice Lee Allen is barely a blip on the radar screen. Three percent may be her high point.
Any word of possible debates between Goodlatte and Rasoul? Last week's 5th District debate between Virgil Goode and Tom Periello is getting attention - a good thing for voters and our democracy. Hope to see something similar here in the 6th District.

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