Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Brady leads Quinn, but margin reduced

Bill Brady is still favored to become the most obscure big state Governor in the country this fall, as he leads Pat Quinn 34-30 despite 56% of Illinois voters having no opinion about him. But Quinn has reduced what was a 10 point deficit now to 4 points and is looking a little more viable for November than he was back in April.

The main thing driving this race continues to be Quinn's unpopularity. He has only a 27% approval rating with 50% of voters disapproving of him. Brady is an unknown to a majority of voters in the state with the ones who do have an opinion splitting evenly, as 22% see him favorably and 22% unfavorably. But with Quinn's numbers what they are it really doesn't matter yet whether voters know Brady or not- they just know they want a change.

Quinn's numbers really haven't changed much at all over the course of the three Illinois polls PPP has conducted this year. The chances of his actually convincing Illinois voters they like him by November do not seem very good. But he can make voters in this strongly Democratic state think that Brady is an even worse alternative and there's a lot of room for him to make that argument with most voters not yet having formed an opinion about the GOP nominee.

Green Party candidate Rich Whitney, who got 10% of the vote in 2006, is polling at 9% in this poll. It will be interesting to see if he can keep up that level of support. Rod Blagojevich's reelection was pretty much a foregone conclusion by election day last time so disaffected Democrats could safely cast a vote for Whitney without it resulting in the election of a Republican Governor. It doesn't look like that will be the case this time and Whitney could see an erosion in support if Democrats who don't like Quinn still end up voting for him because they feel the need to keep Brady from being elected.

Brady is still favored here but he is not strong enough on his own merits as a candidate for this race to turn into a blowout. It should be competitive into the fall.

Full results here

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