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To:

Team Hernandez

From: Margie Omero, Momentum Analysis Re: Date: Findings from recent survey in CA-10 October 3, 2012

Our recently completed survey shows Jose Hernandez and Jeff Denham in a statistical tie. Denham is clearly vulnerable, with mediocre favorable ratings, negative job ratings, and an anemic re-elect. And despite being outspent by over half a million dollars by Republican-backed groups in the time prior to this polling, more say what theyve seen and heard about Hernandez makes them view him more favorably. The opposite is true for Denham. Overall, this is an evenly divided district, where the Presidential race, party identification, and party registration are also all tied. The race for Congress is a statistical tie: The race for Congress is a statistical tie, with Denhams two-point advantage within the polls 4.5% margin of error. And there is no enthusiasm gap, as Hernandez has just as much strong support (26%) as Denham (26%). The race has tightened significantly since July as voters become more familiar with Hernandezs unique and inspiring biography. The head-to-head is actually a bit narrower than a generic Congressional ballot, although that too is within the margin of error (42% Democrat, 46% Republican). Similar to the congressional vote, the generic candidates receive near equal proportions of strong support (33% for the Democrat, 32% for the Republican).

Denham in clearly vulnerable: As we enter the final stages of this campaign and despite a decade in public office Representative Denhams image is weak. Equal proportions view Denham very unfavorably (13%) as very favorably (13%). And a plurality give Denham negative job marks (42%) while fewer give him positive marks (26%), with nearly three times as many poor ratings (14%) as excellent ones (5%). Even among voters Denham currently represents he receives more negative job marks (43%) than positive (31%). Further indicating his vulnerability, less than a quarter of the electorate (23%) is ready to reelect Denham. His reelect is higher (31%) among current constituents, but he far from meets the 45% to 50% threshold typical of incumbents. Despite Republican super-PAC attacks, voters are more favorable toward Hernandez after ad blitz, less favorable toward Denham: In the period prior to this polling, Denham and Republican supporters have outspent Hernandez and Democrats by half a million dollars here, yet voters view Hernandez more favorably after viewing recent ads. Near equal proportions recall seeing ads about Hernandez (62%) and Denham (58%). However, what voters have seen about Hernandez makes them more (41%) rather than less (26%) favorable toward him. For Denham, the opposite is true. A plurality feels less favorable toward Denham as a result of what theyve seen (37%), fewer are more favorable (32%). And when voters recall what specifically they remember from the ads, its clear Hernandezs story (highlighted in the ad Believe) has penetrated. (The image below shows all comments voters made recalling what they had seen, heard and read about Jose Hernandez. The bigger a word appears in the image below, the more times that word was mentioned.)

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Meanwhile, voters recall few specifics about Denhams ads and negative is a top descriptor. For example, one survey respondent said, whatever I saw was recent and it gave me a negative impression [of Denham].

This is a truly purple district: The electorate in the newly drawn 10th Congressional District is evenly divided in party identification, registration and in the presidential race. With such partisan parity, the Congressional race will likely remain very close until Election Day.

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***** Astronaut Jose Hernandez finds himself in a strong position to unseat politician Jeff Denham in November. However, to do so he will need significant resources to continue to communicate with voters and combat the onslaught of negative ads coming from outside Republican groups.
These results are based on a survey of 500 likely voters in Californias 10 Congressional District. The survey was conducted by telephone, September 29-October 1, 2012. Voters from the state voter file were contacted and further screened to include only likely voters. The margin of error for the sample overall is +/-4.5 percentage points. One-hundred (100) respondents took the survey on their mobile phone. Respondents were given the choice of taking the survey in Spanish or English.
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