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Recent Nebraska Poll Results
October 18, 2012
The 2012 Nebraska Senate race remains competitive. Deb Fisher is only five points ahead of Bob Kerrey in the current horserace. Her personal popularity has eroded significantly since thehoneymoon period after the Republican primary: her unfavorable rating now more than double what itwas then, and her favorable rating is statistically in
distinguishable from Kerrey’s. Kerrey is putting
together the coalition he needs to win majority support. The outcome of the race remains uncertain asabout one in five voters are either undecided or admitting that they might switch candidates beforeelection day.
Deb Fischer’s advantage in the current horserace
is five points: 45%-50%. By comparison, Romney leadsObama by 14. Kerrey and Fischer win comparable proportions of voters registered with their own party,but Kerrey now has a substantial advantage (56%-37%) among the 17% of likely voters enrolled asIndependents or with a minor party.More significantly, Kerrey now has the support of 17% of registered Republicans. Thus, while the
Republican registration advantage continues to be the main source of Fischer’s lead in vote preference,
Kerrey is within striking distance of the coalition Democrats like Kerrey, Ben Nelson, and Jim Exon haveforged to win majority support in this Republican state.Fischer remains much less well known than Kerrey. More than 10%
of Fischer’s “supporters” either do
not recognize her name or are unable to rate their feelings about her. Our focus groups find that eventhis level of recognition is quite shallow, with few swing voters -- including those inclined to vote forFischer -- aware of even the most basic information about her. Our research also demonstrates that thislack of familiarity makes Fischer exceedingly vulnerable to credible unfavorable information about hersuch as the advertising that just began.It is worth a reminder that robo-polls are particularly susceptible to inaccurate vote estimates inNebraska. First, robo-polls are prohibited by law from calling cell phones. This makes a difference in therepresentativeness of the sample, since fully 30% of adults in the state rely exclusively on a cell phonewithout access to a landline number, and Kerrey does particularly well with cell phone respondents.