Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Republicans Within Striking Distance of Weiner's Seat

Dun, dun, duuun:
Democrat David Weprin holds a scant, six-point lead over Republican Bob Turner in a Sept. 13 special election to replace disgraced former Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y., according to a new Siena Research Institute poll released Wednesday.

Weprin leads Turner among likely voters, 48 percent to 42 percent. Nine percent are undecided.

Turner, a businessman who lost to Weiner in the 2010 general election in the district, has a six-point lead in the borough of Brooklyn, where roughly 30 percent of the district's voters reside. But Weprin, a state assemblyman, holds a ten-point lead in Queens, home to seven-in-ten voters. Weprin's father, Saul, represented Queens in the Assembly for more than 30 years, rising to the position of speaker before his passing in 1994.

Voters' opinions are surprisingly hardened with a month to go until the election. Just 15 percent of likely voters say they may change their minds between now and Election Day. That's split roughly evenly between Weprin's (17 percent) and Turner's (13 percent) supporters.

Turner has found an important and unlikely backer in the form of former New York Mayor Ed Koch. Koch was known for asking New Yorkers "How am I doing?" during his three terms as the city's Democratic mayor. More than 20 years after he left Gracie Mansion, the voters of the Ninth Congressional District have an overwhelmingly positive answer for Koch: A remarkable 69 percent of likely voters have a favorable opinion of him, while just 23 percent have an unfavorable opinion.
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