U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal at a Democratic unity rally Credit: Christine Stuart file photo

A Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday contained good news for Democrats Ned Lamont and Richard Blumenthal. The survey found the governor and U.S. senator both leading their Republican challengers by 17 points.

The survey of 1,911 likely voters was conducted between Sept. 15 and Sept. 19 and represents the Hamden-based polling institute’s first snapshot of Connecticut races this year. The poll measured public opinion of both Lamont and Republican Bob Stefanowski as well as Blumenthal and Republican Leora Levy. 

It found both Democrats with identical 57% – 40% leads with just seven weeks before Election Day, providing more breathing room than surveys released last week by WTNH and Emerson College, which put Lamont ahead by 10 points and Blumenthal by 13.

In a press release, Poll Director Doug Schwartz said the results bode well for Lamont, a first term governor facing a rematch with Stefanowski, whom he also ran against in 2018.

“Seventeen points is by any measure a huge lead,” Schwartz said. “Barring a calamity, it certainly looks like a cruise control ride up I-91 and back to the statehouse in Hartford for Governor Lamont.”

The survey suggested Lamont possessed a wide lead among women voters, who reported supporting the Democrat 63% to 35%. Meanwhile, a slimmer majority of men, 50% to 47%, also reported supporting Lamont. 

Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont Credit: Christine Stuart file photo

Voters gave Lamont a stronger favorability rating at 54% to 36% versus Stefanowski’s 33% to 39%. However, the Republican may be able to make up some ground with the 27% of surveyed voters who reported not knowing enough about him to form an opinion.

On the Senate side of the survey, Blumenthal also held a strong advantage among women voters who reported favoring the two-term Democrat 64% to 33% while men were evenly divided at 48% to 48%. 

Voters were familiar with Blumenthal, a fixture of Connecticut politics for three decades, and gave him a 51% to 39% favorability rating. They were less sure about Levy, a long time fund-raiser and member of the Republican National Committee. The poll found Levy with a 27% to 29% favorability rating with a sizable 44% reporting not knowing enough about the candidate. 

Levy pulled off a surprise primary win in August after receiving a last-minute endorsement from former President Donald Trump. 

The Quinnipiac poll also attempted to measure the impact of Connecticut voters’ opinions of Trump and President Joe Biden on the Senate contest and found more than half of voters reported that neither Trump nor Biden would be a factor in their U.S. Senate choices. 

However, surveyed voters gave Trump a 27% to 65% favorability rating. 

“Is it shaping up to be a big blue state blowout for Blumenthal? GOP Senate candidate and Trump enthusiast Leora Levy certainly gets no assist from Trump’s 27 percent favorability rating in the state as Blumenthal gets strong support from women,” Schwartz said. 

The survey found voters most concerned with inflation, which ranked as the most urgent issue for 32% of those surveyed, while taxes took the runner up spot with 20%.