State Attorney General Jerry Brown is clinging to a four-point lead over leading GOP candidate Meg Whitman in the 2010 race for governor, according to a new poll by Research 2000 for the progressive political website, Daily Kos. Brown leads Whitman 45 percent to 41 percent. The other Republican candidate, Steve Poizner, appears to be all but out of the race. Whitman is beating him by a commanding 51-19 margin.
In the US Senate race, Democrat Barbara Boxer is leading moderate Republican Tom Campbell also by four points, 47-43. Campbell, however, appears to have a tougher race in the GOP primary than Whitman. He’s up against former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, and Tea Party favorite Chuck DeVore. Campbell leads Fiorina 33-24, with DeVore only pulling in just 7 percent so far, although 36 percent of California Republicans say they’re undecided in that race.
The four points separating Brown and Whitman also represents a slight tightening of the race since Research 2000 did its last poll in September. Back then, Brown led 42-36. But as Daily Kos points out, Brown has run an almost nonexistent campaign since then, while Whitman plastered the airwaves with ads during the Winter Olympics. It’ll be interesting to see whether Whitman’s bad publicity this week after her serious mishandling of the state political press corps at the Port of Oakland will affect her numbers against Brown.