Republican state Sen. Bill Brady now leads Gov. Pat Quinn 45 percent to 38 percent in Illinois's gubernatorial contest, according to the latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of likely voters in the state.
Seven percent (7 percent) prefer some other candidate, and 10 percent are undecided.
The race in President Obama’s home state has tightened slightly since last month, when Brady was 10 points ahead. Quinn, who became governor following the impeachment last year of fellow Democrat Rod Blagojevich, continues to fall far short of the 50 percent support viewed as critical for incumbents at this stage of a campaign. Perhaps most telling at this point is the poor showing he’s making in a state that trends Democratic.
Both candidates barely eked out victories in hard-fought party nomination battles. But Brady can already claim support from 78 percent of his GOP base, while Quinn attracts only 64 percent of Democrats, the same percentage he drew in March. Voters not affiliated with either of the parties prefer Brady to Quinn by better than three-to-one.
Quinn continues to earn low marks for his handling of the state’s budget crisis.
Forty-three percent (43 percent) of Illinois voters approve of Quinn’s performance as governor, while 56 percent disapprove, unchanged from last month. This includes nine percent (9 percent) who Strongly Approve of the job he is doing and 33 percent who Strongly Disapprove.
Quinn is viewed very favorably by 13 percent of Illinois voters, while 28 percent view him very unfavorably. Just five percent (5 percent) have no opinion of the governor.
Nineteen percent (19 percent) have a very favorable view of Brady, and nearly as many (15 percent) regard him very unfavorably. But nearly one-out-of-five voters (18 percent) don’t know enough about him to have any kind of opinion.
At this point in a campaign, Rasmussen Reports considers the number of people with strong opinions more significant than the total favorable/unfavorable numbers.
Indicative of the state’s political leanings is the decision by Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan not to join with more than 14 other states in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of a provision in the newly passed federal health care plan. Quinn agrees with Madigan’s decision not to sue the government over the requirement that every American buy or obtain health insurance.
Just 40 percent of Illinois voters think the state should sue the federal government, while 47 percent oppose the idea.
Nationally, 49 percent of voters favor their states suing the federal government over that requirement in the health care plan. Thirty-even percent (37 percent) oppose such a suit.
Only nine percent (9 percent) of Illinois voters rate the economy as good or excellent. Fifty percent (50 percent) view it as poor. Thirty-six percent (36 percent) say the economy is getting better, while 33 percent think it's getting worse. Twenty-four percent (24 percent) say it’s staying about the same.
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