2010 Elections Poll Round-up: The Enthusiasm Gap Persists

Reid and Murray remain in dead heats while O'Donnell makes up ground but has a long way to go.

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As the final week of the 2010 campaign comes to a close, new polls suggest the results of the midterm may all come down to who shows up to vote. One survey shows likely voters evenly split between supporting the GOP and backing the Democrats, but those who say they are the "most likely" to cast ballots in this election are leaning Republican. But the enthusiasm gap between Republican and Democratic voters appears to be narrowing, according to another survey. Senate Democrats Majority Leader Harry Reid in Nevada and Patty Murray in Washington are virtually tied with their GOP challengers. Republican Christine O'Donnell has made some headway in Delaware, though she still trails Democrat Chris Coons. Meanwhile, Delaware's only House seat—the one left vacant by GOPer Mike Castle, who lost to O'Donnell in the Senate primary—looks like it could be taken over by Democrats. And while Democratic Rep. Kendrick Meek took to the airwaves this morning to squash reports he is dropping out of Florida's three-way Senate race, Republican Marco Rubio is leading the competition by at least 20 points. Here is today's poll roundup:


A McClatchy/Marist College poll shows the Democratic Party with a 47 percent to 41 percent advantage among registered voters heading into the midterm. However, among voters who say they are "most likely" to vote in 2010, Republicans have a 49 percent to 43 percent edge. Yet, neither party has an advantage in terms of likely voters. Among those most enthusiastic about voting, 49 percent are Republicans while 35 percent identify as Democrats. But the study indicates the enthusiasm gap has narrowed. The same poll earlier this month showed the GOP with a 23 point advantage in voter enthusiasm compared to Democrats.

A Bloomberg News poll shows that among likely voters nationwide, 47 percent say they will vote for or are leaning towards the Republican candidate in their House district, compared to 44 percent for the Democratic candidate. Six percent remain undecided.

A Rasmussen poll shows 67 percent of likely voters say America is not better off in 2010 than it was five years ago, while 23 percent feel the country has improved. Forty-three percent say Obama and the Democrats haven't had enough time to fulfill their agenda, while 47 percent say the party in charge has been given enough time. Additionally, 64 percent say the U.S. is heading in the wrong direction.

[See photos from the campaign trail.]

California Senate

Three-term Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer leads Republican Carly Fiorina 49 percent to 41 percent among likely voters, according to a new Field Poll survey. Boxer also leads among independents, 49 percent to 32 percent.

Delaware Senate

Republican O'Donnell trails Democrat Coons by 10 points, according to a Monmouth University poll released today. Coons leads 51 percent to 41 percent among likely voters, and 56 percent say O'Donnell is unqualified to be a Senator. But the race has recently narrowed. The same poll two weeks ago showed Coons ahead by 19 points. O'Donnell has a 47 percent to 42 percent edge over Coons among independents.

[See a slide show of 14 establishment candidates who lost to insurgents.]

Delaware's At-Large House District

Democrat John Carney leads Republican Glen Urquhart 51 percent to 44 percent among likely voters, according to a Monmouth University poll. Carney has a 46 percent favorability rating compared to Urquhart's 38 percent. The pair is competing for the seat held for 18 years by Republican Castle, who was defeated by O'Donnell in the state's GOP primary for the Senate.

Florida Senate

Republican Rubio has opened up a 20 point lead over independent Gov. Charlie Crist, according to a new Sunshine State News poll. Among likely voters, 47 percent support Rubio and 27 percent back Crist. Democrat Meek takes 23 percent, while 2 percent remain undecided. Independent voters are virtually split between Rubio and Crist.

Kentucky Senate

Two polls show Republican Rand Paul leading Democrat Jack Conway by several points. A Rasmussen poll shows Paul ahead of Conway 53 percent to 41 percent among likely voters, with 4 percent undecided. A Survey USA poll shows Paul leading 52 percent to 43 percent among likely voters. Among Paul supporters, 90 percent have a favorable opinion of the Tea Party movement, which has supported him throughout this election.