Rasmussen: Sen. DeMint Has Huge Lead on Greene

Saturday, 28 Aug 2010 04:00 PM


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Republican incumbent Jim DeMint remains far ahead of surprise Democratic nominee Alvin Greene in the U.S. Senate race in South Carolina.

A new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of likely voters in the state finds DeMint leading Green by a better than 3-to-1 margin, 63 percent to 19 percent.  Eight percent (8 percent) prefer some other candidate, and 10 percent are undecided. 

These findings show little change from last month and early June, just after Green’s shocking victory in the state’s Democratic primary. 

South Carolina remains Solid GOP in the Rasmussen Reports Election 2010 Balance of Power rankings.

While 97 percent of Republicans favor DeMint, just 45 percent of Democrats support Greene.  Among voters not affiliated with either political party, DeMint leads his challenger by nearly 50 points.

Greene was indicted earlier this month in connection with an incident in which he showed pornography to a college student against her will. If convicted, he faces up to five years in prison, according to The Associated Press. Democratic Party officials have tried to get Greene to drop out of the race, but he has refused.

Republican state legislator Nikki Haley now earns 52 percent of the vote in her bid to be the next governor of South Carolina. Democratic state Sen. Vincent Sheheen picks up 36 percent of the vote. 

Greene, an African-American, captures 63 percent of the black vote. Eighty percent of whites favor DeMint.

Seventy-two percent of all voters in the state consider DeMint a conservative, while 48 percent classify Greene as a liberal.  However, 32 percent are not sure what the Army veteran’s political ideology is.

Fifty-five percent of South Carolina voters describe DeMint’s political views as mainstream, while just 14 percent say the same of Greene's views. Fifty-four percent consider Greene extreme, and 24 percent feel that way about DeMint.

Fifty-three percent of South Carolina voters have a very unfavorable opinion of Greene, while just seven percent view him very favorably. Because of the heavy media coverage of his unorthodox candidacy and his recent scandal, Greene is surprisingly well-known for a political newcomer.

DeMint is viewed very favorably by 44 percent and very unfavorably by 17 percent of voters in the state.

At this point in a campaign, Rasmussen Reports considers the number of people with a strong opinion more significant than the total favorable/unfavorable numbers. 

Thirty-nine percent of voters in South Carolina approve of President Barack Obama's job performance.  Sixty percent disapprove. This is a higher level of disapproval than is found nationally in the Rasmussen Reports Daily Presidential Tracking Poll. 

The survey of 500 likely voters in South Carolina was conducted on Aug. 25, 2010, by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95 percent level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC.

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