Democratic former Rep. Jay Inslee has opened up a slight lead in this year's Washington State gubernatorial race, according to a new poll that underscores Republican Attorney General Rob McKenna's uphill battle to become the first member of his party to win the statehouse since 1980.
The Seattle-based Elway Poll shows Inslee leading McKenna for the first time this year, 43 percent to 36 percent, with 21 percent undecided.
Inslee's support his risen significantly this year, while McKenna's has fallen accordingly. In a February Elway Poll, McKenna led Inslee, 45 percent to 36 percent. An Elway Poll conducted last month showed McKenna's lead slip to a statistically-insignificant 2 percentage points.
Inslee leads McKenna among female voters, 45 percent to 35 percent, while the two candidates run neck-and-neck among men (Inslee leads, 41 percent to 38 percent).
The Elway Poll was conducted July 18-22, surveying 405 registered voters. The margin of error is plus-or-minus 5 percentage points. Some details from the poll were first reported Monday by the Seattle-based news blog Publicola. Hotline On Call obtained a complete report on Tuesday morning.