In an election in Connecticut today, incumbent U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman, running as an Independent, defeats Democrat Ned Lamont and Republican Alan Schlesinger, according to a SurveyUSA poll conducted exclusively for WABC-TV New York. 8 weeks to the 11/7/06 general election, it's Lieberman 51%, Lamont 38%, Schlesinger 7%. Lieberman leads 6:1 among Republicans, 3:2 among Independents. Lamont leads 3:2 among Democrats. 83% of the Democrats who voted for Lieberman in the 08/08/06 Democratic Primary, which Lamont won by 4 points, stick with Lieberman as an Independent in the General Election. 16% of Democrats who voted for Lieberman in the Primary switch to Lamont in the General. 17% of Republicans support the Republican Party's nominee, Schlesinger. Of those who approve of President Bush's position on Iraq, 76% vote Lieberman. Among those who disapprove of Bush on Iraq, 59% vote Lamont. Of those who say "Terrorism" is the most important issue, 75% vote Lieberman. Of those who say "Iraq" is the most important issue, 73% vote Lamont. SurveyUSA asked voters whether they are voting "for" their candidate or "against" another candidate. 57% of those who vote Lamont say they are voting "against" another candidate. 60% of those who vote Lieberman say they are voting "for" Lieberman. For Lamont, there is solace in this one fact: of voters who in 2000 voted for Joe Lieberman both for Vice President of the United States and for U.S. Senator from Connecticut, half now vote for Lamont, half now vote for Lieberman. But that alone is not enough to elect Lamont.
The survey was of 527 likely voters, with a margin of error of +/- 4.2%. Crosstabs are here.
A few separate polls now show Lieberman with a decent lead. There's a long time before the election, but Lamont has yet to lead in any poll, although he has come close.
Can he close the gap? His campaign pulled off a remarkable win over Lieberman by erasing a double-digit gap in the two months before the primary, but the general election is a different beast. What worked in the primary won't work again in the general.
...Right? Or is the electorate pissed off enough to kick Lieberman out?
SurveyUSA Poll 09/09/2006 - 09/11/2006. CT Senate. Released 12 September, 2006.