New Haven (WTNH) - Just like the Joe Lieberman Senate Race in 2006, next year'sChris Dodd Senate Race is shaping up to be one of the most closelywatched in the country.
And a new Quinnipiac University Poll shows Dodd still in troublewith voters but bringing the Democratic faithful back to hisside.
Dodd got a big boost when it was announced that the ConnecticutDemocratic State Central Committee has unanimously voted aresolution in support of him. But his poll numbers are still bad,indicating voters are still mad at him.
The latest Quinnipiac University Poll shows some favorable newsfor the State's Senior Senator; things aren't as bad as they werebut he is still trailing one of his potential challengers.
The latest poll shows former 2nd District Congressman RobSimmons leading Dodd in a potential match up by about ten pointsbut it was 25 points back in April.
"He's got plenty of time, he's got a year and a half before theelection; he's a very savvy campaigner, this is a blue state, soyou certainly can't count Senator Dodd out," said Doug Schwartz ofthe Quinnipiac Poll.
And as of now, Simmons appears to be a huge favorite amongRepublican voters in a potential primary.
Among G-O-P voters, Simmons gets 42 percent with both formerAmbassador Tom Foley of Greenwich and State Senator Sam Caligiuriat 5 percent.
Most people say they don't know enough about Foley, who hasnever held office, and they don't know enough about Caligiuri whosedistrict is in Greater Waterbury.
It does appear that the heavy schedule of pro Dodd TVcommercials has had an impact. A commercial campaign with theslogan: 'Chris Dodd, he's fighting back for us.'
The Quinnipiac Poll shows that Dodd's favorability numbers,among Connecticut residents, have gone up 10 points in past threemonths.
"He is making some progress on the job approval front. Hisnumbers are up, especially among Democrats; he's back above 70percent but he's still struggling with independents and they'regoing to be a lot tougher to get back than his own partisans," saidSchwartz.
Dodd is planning to be in Connecticut this weekend and visitManchester Hospital to talk about the National Health Care Reformeffort.
UConn is expected to make it official in a news conference Thursday afternoon, but they have made a decision regarding who will be leading the football team next season.
The State Democratic Party has had to return a $10,000 contribution that appears to be illegal. It may be the first campaign contribution 'flare-up' of next year's race for governor.
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