Siena Poll: Nan Hayworth Holds 7-Point Lead
Freshman Rep. Nan Hayworth, R-N.Y., one of Democrats' top targets in the House, leads her challenger by seven percentage points and is just short of majority support in a new independent poll released Friday morning.
Hayworth leads Democratic nominee Sean Patrick Maloney 49 percent to 42 percent in the new Siena College survey, the second conducted in New York's 18th Congressional District this cycle. A mid-September Siena poll showed Hayworth leading Maloney 46 percent to 33 percent; a third candidate running on the Working Families Party line received 10 percent in the September poll, but he has since dropped out. The party then gave its nomination to Maloney.
Maloney absorbed most of the support that Larry Weissmann drew as the WFP candidate, but Hayworth also improved her position marginally over the last month. With less than three weeks to go until Election Day, Maloney would have to win virtually all of the undecided voters in the poll to pull ahead of the Hayworth, unless he could also draw some voters away from her.
Siena surveyed 615 likely voters from Oct. 16-17. The poll's margin of error is plus-or-minus 4.0 percentage points.
Both seem to have had trouble moving opinion in their direction over the last month. Hayworth's favorability stands at 48 percent, exactly where it was in the September Siena poll, though her unfavorability rating ticked up from 37 percent to 43 percent. (AFSCME, SEIU, and House Majority PAC have been running TV ads and distributing mail against Hayworth.) A majority of voters have now formed an opinion of Maloney, who was largely unknown in September. But while his favorables improved from 27 percent to 33 percent, it's now lower than his unfavorability rating, which doubled from 19 percent to 38 percent. TV ads from Hayworth's campaign as well as the National Republican Congressional Committee and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce appear to have taken their toll on Maloney's image.