Latest poll shows Specter – Sestak primary race now ‘too close to call’

The latest Quinnipiac poll of the Pennsylvania Democratic primary shows a dead heat. Arlen Specter leads Joe Sestak by a “too close to call” margin of 44% – 42% among likely voters. That’s a dramatic shift in the race:

The Specter-Sestak race has narrowed from a 47 – 39 percent Specter lead May 4 and a 53 – 32 percent Specter lead April 7.

“Sen. Arlen Specter has a history of winning close elections and he’ll need that to continue because his once commanding lead is gone. His margin over Sestak is too close to call,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

“The intangibles are clearly on Sestak’s side. He has the momentum and the anti- incumbent wave sweeping the country is a good omen for the challenger,” Brown added. “Troubling for Specter is that one in seven likely primary voters are undecided and incumbents – especially 30-year incumbents who have switched parties – rarely get much of the undecided vote.”

And, the two major newspapers in the country have nearly identical reports on the race today. Apparently, they’ve figure out that Specter is in danger of losing.

The Washington Post:

More than a year after making the most controversial move of his career and days before an election that could end his days in politics, Sen. Arlen Specter (D-Pa.) is still explaining to voters why he left the Republican Party.

The epitome of a northeastern moderate, Specter sought refuge with Democrats in the face of a conservative uprising over his support for a massive economic stimulus package in 2009. Now, he’s finding that the rank and file in his new party may be no more hospitable than those in the one he abandoned.

The New York Times:

One year after leaving the Republican Party in the face of crumbling support, Senator Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania is now fighting to avert rejection — and presumably the end of his career — at the hands of Democrats.

After seeming earlier this year to face an easy race for the Democratic nomination against Representative Joe Sestak, Mr. Specter is in what he acknowledges is an unexpectedly tough campaign, buffeted by a national anti-incumbent sentiment as well as resistance among Democrats wary of embracing a longtime Republican in next Tuesday’s primary.

It sure looks like Sestak has the momentum.

The primary is next Tuesday, May 18th.

On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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