Suffolk Poll Isn't All Good News For Scott Brown
Sometimes, you have to take the bad with the good.
On its face, the new Suffolk University/WHDH-TV poll released late Thursday night is good news for Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., who leads his chief Democratic rival, Harvard University professor and consumer advocate Elizabeth Warren, by nine percentage points. Other public surveys show Warren -- at worst -- running even with Brown, including a separate poll released earlier this week.
But the new Suffolk poll also shows some longer-term slippage for Brown on other questions, including a slight decline in both his personal popularity and the percentage of Massachusetts voters who believe he deserves to be reelected.
The poll represented Boston-based Suffolk University's first survey in Massachusetts since last April, so they had never tested a Brown-Warren matchup. In the previous poll, 58 percent of voters said they had a favorable opinion of Brown. In the new poll, Brown's favorable rating has slid to 52 percent, dropping from 41 percent to 32 percent among Democrats and slipping from 65 percent to 60 percent among independents. The percentage of voters who have an unfavorable opinion of Brown has risen accordingly, from 22 percent last April, to 28 percent now.
Brown's reelect numbers have suffered a similar decline, according to Suffolk's data. Now, 45 percent of Bay State voters say Brown deserves to be reelected, while 39 percent say it is "time to give someone else a chance." Last April, 55 percent of voters said Brown deserved reelection, while only 29 percent said he did not.
Brown has bled support among Democrats: The percentage of Democrats who say Brown deserves reelection has declined from 38 percent last April, to 20 percent now. His decline among independents -- from 62 percent to 54 percent -- has not been as steep.