Republican Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell is actually better known to Delaware’s likely voters than Democrat Chris Coons: 93% say they have heard of Coons, while 97% say they have heard of O’Donnell. Nonetheless, according to the most recent poll by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind, Coons leads O’Donnell 53%-36% in the special election.
O’Donnell is in a statistical dead heat with Coons in Kent and Sussex counties, leading him 46% to 45%. But in the more populous New Castle County, Coons leads by a margin of 58% to 31%. Democrats have largely united behind Coons: 85% say that they will vote for their party’s nominee. However, only 68% of Republicans say that they will vote for O’Donnell. Independents lean to Coons by 46% to 37%.
“Typically, Republicans are more loyal to their party than Democrats,” said Dan Cassino, professor of political science at Fairleigh Dickinson University and survey analyst for the university’s PublicMind research group. “This hesitation by Republicans is hurting O’Donnell.”