Two Bombshell Polls in the Battle for the NC Senate
On Thursday, two respected North Carolina-based pollsters, left-leaning Public Policy Polling (PPP) and right-leaning Civitas, released separate bombshell polls that are rocking the North Carolina political world.
The Civitas poll shows Democratic Senator A.B. Swindell trailing Republican challenger Buck Newton 47-41 in the District 11 State Senate race. Newton is a first-time candidate running against 5-term incumbent Swindell in a district labeled “D+4″ in the NC Partisan Index (meaning Democrats traditionally hold a 4-6 point advantage).
In addition to that positive news for NC Senate Republicans, PPP released a poll showing Republicans leading the Democrats 49-41 in the generic legislative ballot. But the real news in this poll is the independent vote. Independent voters in North Carolina favor Republicans over Democrats 51-20. According to PPP, “If that holds through November the GOP will almost definitely take control of the General Assembly.”
Taken together, these polls vividly illustrate the growing momentum on the Republican side in North Carolina.
Let’s revisit the Civitas poll. Most election observers thought the NC Senate 11 race could be close, but few could have predicted a 6-point Republican advantage this early in the campaign. As with the PPP poll, the most telling results are with the unaffiliated voters:
Newton’s lead jumps to 54 percent-40 percent among voters who said they are most likely to vote in 2010. Additionally, unaffiliated voters are heavily backing Newton by a 62-17 margin.
“Senator Swindell appears to be in serious political trouble,” said Civitas Institute Senior Legislative Analyst Chris Hayes. “The overwhelming Republican wave running through the electorate is on the verge of sweeping him out of office.”