Republican Carly Fiorina has pulled into a virtual tie with Democratic incumbent U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, moving California from leans Democratic to a tossup in the Rasmussen Reports Senate Balance of Power rankings.
Fiorina attracted 43 percent support to Boxer’s 44 percent in Rasmussen’s Aug. 24 poll of 750 likely voters in California. Five percent like another candidate in the race, and 8 percent are undecided.
Early this month, Boxer held a five-point lead, 45 percent to 40 percent; in July, she was ahead 49 percent to 42 percent. Since February, Boxer’s support has ranged from 42 percent to 49 percent. In those same surveys, Fiorina, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, has earned 38 percent to 43 percent of the vote.
When leaners are included in the new totals, Boxer moves ahead by 5 points – 49 percent to 44 percent. Leaners are those who initially indicate no preference for either of the candidates but answer a follow-up question and say they are leaning toward a particular candidate.
Early in any campaign, the numbers without leaners are generally more significant. Later in a campaign, the numbers with leaners matter more. After Labor Day, Rasmussen Reports will report the numbers with leaners as the primary indicators of the campaign.
More than 80 percent of those who support Fiorina say they are certain how they will vote in November. Just under 80 percent of Boxer’s supporters say the same.
Still, given California’s Democratic leanings and Boxer’s powers of incumbency, the race remains a tough one for political newcomer Fiorina.
Fiorina earns 89 percent support from Republican voters, while 77 percent of Democrats favor Boxer. Voters not affiliated with either party give a modest edge to the Democrat.
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