The Campaign Spot

Latest in Delaware: Coons 49, O’Donnell 40, Castle 5

We have our first sense of how a write-in bid by Mike Castle would impact Delaware’s Senate race.

Rasmussen polls Delaware likely voters and finds Castle only gets 5 percent, and that takes a chunk out of Democrat Chris Coons’s support, but not quite enough, leaving Coons at 49 percent and O’Donnell at 40 percent.

It is possible that a write-in campaign by Congressman Mike Castle could hurt Democrat Chris Coons more than Republican Christine O’Donnell in the Delaware campaign for U.S. Senate.

A new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Delaware voters finds Coons with 49% support, while O’Donnell earns 40% of the vote. Castle, a longtime congressman who lost to O’Donnell in the state’s GOP Primary, picks up five percent (5%). Another five percent (5%) remain undecided. (See toplines).

Polling for write-in campaigns is always challenging, so results should be interpreted with caution. For this survey, Rasmussen Reports asked respondents about a choice between Coons and O’Donnell without mentioning Castle. That is the choice voters will see when they enter the voting booth. However, when response options were offered to survey respondents, Castle’s name was mentioned.

Castle has not indicated that he will run a write-in campaign and it is likely that his support could increase if he were to do so. Rasmussen Reports did ask Castle supporters who they would vote for in a two-person race and virtually all said either Coons or not sure.

That last line is the key. I expect we’ll hear a lot of cries that a Castle bid would take away Republican votes from O’Donnell, but at least according to this poll, that is not the case.

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