McMAHON CHOPS BLUMENTHAL LEAD TO 10 PTS IN SENATE RACE, SIMMONS GAINS GROUND ON McMAHON

Republican former wrestling executive Linda McMahon trails Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, the Democrat, 50 – 40 percent in the U.S. Senate race, according to a Quinnipiac University poll of registered voters released today. That’s down from a 54 – 37 percent Blumenthal lead July 16.
In a separate survey of Republican likely primary voters, Rob Simmons trails Ms. McMahon 47 – 30 percent, with 14 percent for Peter Schiff. This compares to a 52 – 25 percent McMahon lead in a July 16 survey by the independent Quinnipiac University.
Only 8 percent of these Republican likely voters are undecided, but 38 percent of those who name a candidate say they might change their mind by the August 10 primary.
McMahon gets a 62 – 27 percent favorability rating from Republican likely voters, while Simmons gets a 49 – 24 percent score, with 25 percent who don’t know enough about him to form an opinion. For Schiff, 61 percent don’t know enough to form an opinion.
Looking at McMahon and Simmons, Republican voters say:
• 41 – 33 percent that McMahon has the best character and personality to be a U.S. Senator;
• 39 – 33 percent that Simmons is most qualified to be a Senator;
• 42 – 27 percent that they most agree with McMahon on key issues;
• 45 – 25 percent that they most agree with McMahon’s positions on the economy and jobs;
• 54 – 25 percent that McMahon is best able to win the general election.
“The McMahon-Blumenthal Senate race in Connecticut could be a real smackdown, as the Republican has the money and momentum, cutting into Blumenthal’s lead month to month,” said Quinnipiac University Poll Director Douglas Schwartz, PhD.
“Independent voters, the largest bloc of voters in Connecticut, are for the first time evenly divided between Linda McMahon, who gets 46 percent, and Richard Blumenthal, who gets 44 percent. Blumenthal led 54 – 35 percent among independent voters just three weeks ago,” Dr. Schwartz added.
“But as McMahon focuses on Blumenthal, she better watch her back. Rob Simmons has shown surprising strength among Republican voters after jumping back into the primary contest barely two weeks ago. But it might be too little too late for Simmons.
“Among all voters, McMahon runs better than Simmons against Blumenthal, which is different than our last poll when they ran roughly the same against Blumenthal. Republican primary voters think McMahon has the better character and personality to be a U.S. Senator, but that Simmons is more qualified.”
Among registered voters, Blumenthal leads Simmons 54 – 35 percent and tops Schiff 57 – 30 percent.
Democrats back Blumenthal over McMahon 82 – 11 percent while Republicans back McMahon 71 – 18 percent.
“While Blumenthal has lost independent voter support, his support among Republicans is at 18 percent,” Schwartz said.
Blumenthal gets a 57 – 30 percent favorability rating from Connecticut voters, compared to 60 – 28 percent July 16.
McMahon’s 43 – 37 percent favorability rating is unchanged.  From July 28 – August 2, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,299 Connecticut registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.7 percentage points. Also from July 29 – August 2, Quinnipiac University conducted a separate survey of 1,003 Connecticut likely Republican primary voters with a margin of error of +/- 3.1 percentage points. These likely voters were selected from lists of people who have voted in past elections.