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UD Poll: Democrats at the top of the ticket have double-digit edge

Tom Byrne
Delaware Public

A recent University of Delaware Center for Political Communication poll shows Democrats in statewide races hold sizable leads in the upcoming midterms.

The poll of registered voters found Democratic incumbent Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester grabbing 50% support while her Republican opponent Lee Murphy had 33%.

In the state Attorney General’s race, incumbent Democrat Kathy Jennings leads her Republican opponent Julianne Murray 53% to 40%

The poll indicates those Democratic leads are driven by support from women and New Castle County voters while the GOP’s main support is in Sussex County.

But Center for Political Communication research director Phil Jones cautions this isn’t a doomsday poll for Republicans.

"These are not slam dunk numbers, right. So if all of the undecided voters were to flock to the Republican candidates this would be a 50/50 race. No, I don't think that's likely to happen. Our poll doesn't signal that,” said Jones. “On the other hand with the right candidate you can see a Republican managing to find a way to win statewide."

Delawareans support both vote-by-mail and same day registration with at least 64% of residents in favor of those measures.

The poll also finds continued support for marijuana legalization and Center for Political Communication research director Phil Jones says that may not be an issue this year -- but one 2024 gubernatorial candidates can pounce on.

"Two-thirds of Delawareans say they support the legalization of marijuana. That's without restrictions so not just medical marijuana or for specific cases. This is just legalizing it in full, and so the gubernatorial candidates have an issue here that they can pick up on, right. This is an issue that a big majority of Delawareans support, and is an obvious place to go looking for votes, as you hunt during the primary season," said Jones.

Jones notes Democrats, Republicans, and Independents believe democracy is in danger, albeit probably for different reasons.

According to the poll, 55% of respondents think Democrats would do a better job of handling democracy, while 41% believe Republicans would be better at handling it.

The poll conducted in late September has a 3.3% margin of error.

Delaware Public Media's Election Coverage is supported in part by a grant from Delaware Humanities, a state program of the National Endowment for the Humanities and NEH’s special initiative “A More Perfect Union." The “A More Perfect Union” initiative supports projects that explore, reflect on, and tell the stories of our quest for a more just, inclusive, and sustainable society throughout our history

Joe brings over 20 years of experience in news and radio to Delaware Public Media and the All Things Considered host position. He joined DPM in November 2019 as a reporter and fill-in ATC host after six years as a reporter and anchor at commercial radio stations in New Castle and Sussex Counties.