With just over two weeks left before election day, it should be interesting to see what the campaigns come up with to sway that critical 10% undecided voters. From the Connecticut Post:
Both Himes and Shays have 44 percent support from 501 likely voters contacted last week by UConn pollsters. Most voters believe that jobs and the economy are the biggest issues facing the country. Only 2 percent said they will vote for the two minor-party candidates.This latest poll continues to look bad for Chris Shays, considering the likely "coattails" effect we'll see in Connecticut on the strength of the Presidential race. Barack Obama is polling somewhere around 20% higher than John McCain, and that means a lot of people will be turning out to vote for change.
"So it's really up in the air at this point," said Christine Kraus, associate director of the poll, when it was released at 1 p.m. Monday.
Back in 2006, Democratic challenger Diane Farrell held a slight lead over Shays going into the final two weeks, but that was during a mid-term election where turnouts were much lower than what's expected for next month. Plus, a plurality of voters in the 4th CD went with Lieberman over Democrat Ned Lamont for Senate in that election, which obviously affected any coattails effect that Farrell might have enjoyed. It's definitely easier for a voter to split their ballot if they're already voting for an independent incumbent. The huge margin that Obama is expected to win in Connecticut will likely help Himes, but it's not a given at this point.
The latest enrollment figures for the district from the Secretary of the State include 101,542 Republicans, 141,167 Democrats and 150,575 unaffiliated.There's roughly 40,000 more Democrats than Republicans registered in the 4th, and nearly as many as unaffiliated voters. So if we see a strong Democratic GOTV effort in the final days before election day, there's a good chance we'll see Jim Himes win and join the already strong Connecticut Congressional delegation in Washington.
The Himes campaign needs volunteers to help take back this long-time Republican held seat. If you live in or near the 4th District and have some time to contribute, please go to the Himes For Congress website and fill out the online volunteer form to pitch in and help. This is a golden opportunity for you to make a very real difference in the direction our government takes over the next several years.