Remember (the) Maine: King Lead Down To 3.5%

Well, would you look at that.  According to the latest poll from GS Strategy Group, a poll conducted for the NRSC, Angus King’s advantage in the Maine Senate race is down to 3.5%.  The current race stands at 37% for King, 33.5% for Summers, and 17% for Dill.

Clearly the usual caveats should be mentioned.  This was a poll for a partisan organization – the NRSC – and as such, the results should be treated with a little extra scrutiny.

However, this same pollster conducted a poll in early September which showed the race as an 11% advantage for King, 44-33-11, respectively.  That is generally in the same vicinity as other pollsters have been showing in the same time period.

The most interesting thing about the poll, at least to me, is that Dill has grown her support to 17%.  This is clearly responsible for much of the King implosion, as Summers’ numbers have remained relatively consistent.

The trend line, save for the recent Rasmussen poll which showed the race as a 12% differential, has been relatively consistent.  King began with roughly a 30% lead, then that dropped to 22%, then 16%, then 8% and now 3.5%.  Anyone who denies that this race has closed into an a competitive race is simply ignoring reality.

The question for Summers remains, “can you improve on that 33%?”  King completely blowing his lead will only be deadly for his campaign if Summers can somehow improve and get in the high 30s or low 40s.

Even a marginal increase in his support would make this race dead even, or even give Summers an advantage.

I hate to be “that guy” who says “I told you so”, but… I was basically the only major media figure in Maine to claim from the beginning that this race was actually winnable.  I won’t lie, seeing this race tighten to the point of being a legitimate, competitive race is extremely satisfying to me.

About a month left.  Time for anyone who had been waiting to get off the sidelines and get engaged here.  Angus King’s weakness has been exposed.  If his numbers slide any more, and Summers can find a way to capture even 5% or 6% more, he can win this race.

Matthew Gagnon

About Matthew Gagnon

Matthew Gagnon, of Yarmouth, is the Chief Executive Officer of the Maine Heritage Policy Center, a free market policy think tank based in Portland. Prior to Maine Heritage, he served as a senior strategist for the Republican Governors Association in Washington, D.C. Originally from Hampden, he has been involved with Maine politics for more than a decade.