In Rasmussen Reports’ first look at the U.S. Senate race in Alaska, Republican newcomer Joe Miller holds a 6-point lead over Sitka Mayor Scott McAdams.
The statewide telephone survey of 500 likely voters shows Miller attracting 50 percent of the vote, while McAdams has 44 percent. Four percent prefer some other candidate, and 2 percent are undecided.
This survey was conducted Tuesday night, just hours after incumbent GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski conceded the Republican nomination during a recount of the Aug. 24 primary. Miller, a Fairbanks lawyer and military veteran, benefited from support from the state’s former governor, Sarah Palin, and tea party activists.
Ninety percent of Democrats back McAdams, while 79 percent of Republicans throw their vote behind Miller. McAdams holds a 22-point lead among voters not affiliated with either major political party.
The new numbers move this race from solid Republican to leans Republican in the Rasmussen Reports Election 2010 Senate Balance of Power.
More than 85 percent of Alaska voters view Miller as a conservative, including 65 percent who say he’s very conservative.
Although 33 percent see McAdams as being liberal, 32 percent view him as a moderate.
More than 40 percent see Miller’s views as being mainstream, but almost 50 percent say his views are extreme.
Nearly half in Alaska say McAdams’ views are mainstream, while just 21 percent say his views are extreme. But another 32 percent are not sure.
One-fourth view Miller very favorably, and 33 percent view him very unfavorably by 33 percent.
In McAdams’ ledger, 13 percent regard him very favorably, while 18 percent view him very unfavorably.
In Alaska, 56 percent of voters rate their personal finances as good or excellent, while 11 percent rate them as poor. Although 33 percent say their finances are getting better, 34 percent say they are getting worse. Those results show a slightly higher level of optimism in Alaska compared with those on the national level.
Regarding President Barack Obama, 46 percent of Alaska voters approve of the job he is doing, while 54 percent disapprove. Those ratings are a bit more critical than those found nationally in the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll.
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