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NEWARK, Del. — Democratic
incumbents in Delaware hold solid leads in the upcoming elections for
U.S. House representative and state attorney general.
A new University of Delaware Center for Political Communication poll
finds that 50% of registered voters say they’ll vote to re-elect
Democrat Lisa Blunt Rochester to the U.S. House, while only 33% support
her Republican opponent, Lee Murphy.
In the state attorney general race, incumbent Democrat Kathy Jennings leads Republican Julianne Murray by 13 points, 53% to 40%.
“The poll results suggest the Democrats are on track for a good
election night,” said Professor Phil Jones, research director of the
Center for Political Communication. “Driven by support from women and
New Castle County voters, both incumbents look set to return to office.”
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Consistent with national polling, the Democrats’ leads are driven by a
large gender gap. Blunt Rochester leads by 33 points among women, 59% to
26%, but is effectively tied with Murphy among men, 40% to 41%.
“The gender gap in support for Blunt Rochester has grown since the
Supreme Court’s overturned Roe v. Wade earlier this year,” said Jones.
Polling from the University of Delaware Center for Political
Communication in 2020 showed a 13-point gender gap in support for Blunt
Rochester. This year the gap is 19 points.
The Democrats lead by large margins in New Castle County (61% to 25%
for Blunt Rochester, 63% to 31% for Jennings). The races are more
competitive in Kent County, where Blunt Rochester leads 46% to 27% and
Jennings leads 49 to 37%. The Republicans’ only leads come in Sussex
County, where Murphy is ahead 56 to 27% in the race for Congress, and
Murray ahead 61 to 33% in the AG race.
The poll results also show high approval ratings for most of the
elected officials not on the ballot this year. Voters have favorable
opinions of Governor John Carney (61%), Lt. Governor Bethany Hall-Long
(65%), and U.S. Senators Tom Carper (61%) and Chris Coons (55%).
“There is solid support for Democrats across the board,’’ said Jones.
“Despite the expectations of a national Republican wave, Delaware’s
status as a blue state is not being swept away any time soon.”
The 2022 Delaware Statewide Voter Survey was funded by UD’s Center
for Political Communication (CPC) with support from the College of Arts
and Sciences. The study was supervised by the CPC Research Director Phil
Jones, a professor in the Department of Political Science and
The study was fielded by Issues and Answers Network and obtained
telephone interviews with a representative sample of 904 registered
voters in Delaware. 59% of respondents were interviewed on a landline
telephone and 41% were interviewed on a cell phone. Interviewing was
conducted from Sept. 14-29, 2022, in English. Samples were drawn from a
list of Delaware registered voters.
Statistical results are weighted by gender, age, race, Hispanic
identity, and county to match the population parameters of the adult
population in Delaware. The margin of sampling error for the sample of
registered voters is ± 3.3 percentage points. Overall, the cooperation
rate was 5.0% among cell phone users and 4.8% among landline users.
Article by Center for Political Communication Staff, photo by iStock, graphics by Stephanie Bowman Doroba
Published October 21, 2022