First 2009 Poll Shows McDonnell in Good Position
From Rasmussen, McDonnell ties Deeds, leads McAuliffe by five points, and is losing to Moran by four points. However, as the campaigns haven’t even begun yet, these numbers are far from static. Instead, let’s look at each candidate’s image to see how they enter the field:
McDonnell: 49%/19% Fav/Unfav, 32% unsure
Deeds: 37%/24% Fav/Unfav, 38% unsure
Moran: 33%/31% Fav/Unfav, 36% unsure
McAuliffe: 36%/34% Fav/Unfav, 30% unsure
First, McDonnell’s image is clearly the best, at a net positive of 30 points and almost half of the population having a favorable opinion of him. As the three Democrats battle it out amongst themselves, McDonnell has six months to raise his name ID and increase his favorabality even higher.
Looking at the Democrats, despite Moran performing the best in the general election match-ups, he has the worst image, as he is equally viewed favorably and unfavorably, as does Terry McAuliffe. However, McAuliffe has better name recognition (70%-64%). Deeds has the best image (net positive of 13 points), but is the least known.
As things stand now, regardless of the general election numbers, things can only get better for McDonnell. He already has the best image of the four, and the three Democrats are about to engage in an expensive and contentious primary fight for six months, which is sure to raise their negative ratings. I’d like to see some non-IVR polling, but as we start on a new election cycle, Republicans have reason to be optimistic.