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McDonnell leads Deeds in poll

Bob McDonnell is on the air in early summer, Creigh Deeds is where he’s supposed to be in the silent phase of the general-election campaign. So that McDonnell has a lead in the first July poll of the 2009 campaign season should be no surprise.
“The race for governor right now is in a very similar place to 2005. The Republican atorney gneral has a modest lead four months out from Election Day,” said Dean Debnam, president of Public Policy Polling, which has McDonnell leading Deeds by a 49 percent-to-43 percent margin in its poll out today.

“The question now is whether McDonnell can sustain it, unlike Jerry Kilgore, or whether Deeds will come from behind to win as Tim Kaine did,” Debnam said.

The PPP poll also has Republican Bill Bolling leading Democrat Jody Wagner in the lieutenant-governor race 46 percent to 40 percent and Republican Ken Cuccinelli leading Democrat Steve Shannon 45 percent to 38 percent in the attorney-general race.

Inside the McDonnell-Deeds numbers:

– McDonnell has a 54-33 advantage among independents.

– McDonnell and Deeds are both popular with the electorate, with 51 percent viewing the Republican favorably with just 32 percent holding a negative opinion of him, while 48 percent have a positive take on the Democrat to 29 percent having an unfavorable one.

– Just 3 percent of Democrats have an unfavorable opinion of Deeds, indicating there is basically no lingering resentment from the primary.

– Deeds currently has just a 68-16 lead among African Americans. Democrats frequently under poll with that demographic this far out from an election but usually end up getting 85 percent or more of that vote come November.

– There are a lot more undecided Democrats than Republicans, which makes those voters more inclined to end up in the Deeds camp.

– Deeds’ supporters are also a little more committed than McDonnell’s, with 90 percent of them saying they will definitely vote for him while just 82 percent say that for McDonnell.


– Story by Chris Graham