Longtime Sen. John McCain continues to lead Arizona’s Republican primary by double digits but remains in the same narrow range of support he’s drawn since January.
The latest Rasmussen Reports statewide telephone survey of likely GOP primary voters shows McCain picking up 47 percent support, while challenger J.D. Hayworth earns the vote from 36 percent. Navy veteran and tea party activist Jim Deakin picks up 7 percent support. Eight percent are undecided and 1 percent say they like another candidate.
Any incumbent who earns less than 50 percent support is considered potentially vulnerable, and McCain has been hovering around that mark all year. Since January, McCain’s support has fallen in a narrow 47 percent to 53 percent range. Hayworth's support has generally been in the low 40s. Last month, McCain led Hayworth 52 percent to 40 percent.
Hayworth has criticized McCain for being soft on illegal immigration, an issue that resonates with Arizona voters, but McCain has been a strong supporter of the state’s new immigration law despite criticism of it by President Obama and others.
Almost 90 percent of Arizona’s GOP voters favor the new state law, according to the June 16 survey of 707 likely Republican primary voters.
McCain and Hayworth are closely divided among those voters who favor the law, but the incumbent leads by nearly 50 points among those who oppose it.
Although McCain is well ahead of his challengers among women GOP voters, he is virtually tied with Hayworth among men.
The two are also tied among conservative voters.
McCain is viewed very favorably by 30 percent of GOP voters in Arizona and very unfavorably by 11 percent.
Hayworth’s marks are 24 percent very favorable and 24 percent very unfavorable.
For Deakin, very favorables are 5 percent and very unfavorables are 5 percent. But while McCain and Hayworth are well-known to Arizona voters, 46 percent don't know enough about Deakin to express any kind of opinion about him.
Incumbent Jan Brewer now earns 61 percent support in Arizona’s Republican primary race for governor, marking her second big monthly gain in a row.
Ten percent of Arizona Republicans approve of the job Obama is doing as president, same as last month. Ninety percent (90 percent) disapprove.
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