(Updated) A Quinnipiac University poll released Friday shows Richard Blumenthal maintaining a 17 point lead over Linda McMahon in the U.S. Senate race.
The poll, which doesn’t show much movement in the race, found that Blumenthal leads McMahon 54 to 37 percent. The last poll on the race showed the attorney general with a 55 to 35 percent lead over the former World Wrestling Entertainment executive.
“Connecticut voters still trust Attorney General Richard Blumenthal despite the Vietnam controversy,” said poll director Doug Schwartz. “While Blumenthal remains very popular, Linda McMahon’s favorability numbers are only slightly positive.”
Blumenthal’s 41 point lead over McMahon in January has been cut down to 17 points in the latest poll.
“Ms. McMahon, however, has the momentum, even if the latest movement is only a small three-point change,” Schwartz said. “In January, she trailed Blumenthal by 41 points. In every subsequent poll she has cut into his lead and now has cut that lead by more than 24 points.”
“She still has a long way to go, but she has a lot of time and a lot of money,” Schwartz added.
“I am very encouraged that my message of economic recovery and fiscal responsible is resonating across this state,” McMahon said in a statement. “Voters are frustrated with the direction Washington is taking this country, they are frustrated by runaway government spending and the national debt, and they are increasingly anxious about joblessness and the state of our economy. They have lost faith in career politicians, and they are ready for something different.”
But Blumenthal’s campaign manager Mindy Myers had a different take on the poll.
“Linda McMahon’s $20 million has already made this Connecticut’s most expensive Senate race, and this is the third poll to show barely a third of voters think she has the right experience to be a U.S. Senator and half think she doesn’t,” Myers said. “Her obscene spending can’t disguise a record a putting profits ahead of people, threatening the health of her workers, degrading women and marketing violence to our children. No wonder she’s not debating her Republican opponents.”
Sixty-five percent of Voters polled said Blumenthal has the right kind of experience to be a U.S. Senator; while 49 percent of voters felt McMahon does not have the right kind of experience.
“Linda McMahon’s biggest problem with voters is that only 38 percent think she has the right kind of experience to be a U.S. Senator, which tracks very closely with the percentage of the vote she gets against Blumenthal,” Schwartz said. “She has improved her experience number slightly, but she must do more to convince Connecticut voters that her background as an executive in professional wrestling is the right kind of experience.”
According to Friday’s poll McMahon fends off primary challenges from the Republican Party with 52 percent of likely primary voters. Peter Schiff, the Weston money manager who petitioned his way onto the Aug. 10 ballot, would receive just 13 percent of the vote if the primary were held today, while former Congressman Rob Simmons receives 25 percent.
Simmons announced almost two months ago that he was ending his campaign, but would still be on the ballot for the 46 percent of Republicans that voted for him at the convention. The last June 10 poll showed Simmons with 29 percent of the vote.