BOSTON, June 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Republican Richard Tisei holds a 5 point lead (45% to 40%) among likely voters over Democratic incumbent John Tierney, according to the Emerson College Polling Society. Tierney holds a solid lead in the Democratic primary, but, as the poll suggests, is vulnerable in a rematch against 2012 challenger. In an earlier poll in April the race was tied at 44% each.
Tierney continues to have an upside down name recognition with 51% of respondents having an unfavorable opinion and a 38% favorable rating across the district. This 13-point gap has doubled since April (48% to 42%). Tisei has continued to increase his name recognition from 40% favorable and 29% unfavorable in April to 45% favorable versus a 32% unfavorable in June.
Further worsening Tierney prospects are that only 34% believe he should be reelected, while 53% feel he should not. This 19-point difference is up from 11 points in April (38% reelection and 49% no-reelect).
Yet, even within this context, 46% of respondents think Tierney will win as compared to only 30% picking Tisei as the winner in November. In the April poll 51% of respondents believed Tierney would be reelected, while only 26% expected Tisei to win.
Tierney appears to have a lock on the Democratic nomination with 59% of likely democrat primary goers saying they would vote for him, as compared to 17% for Seth Moulton, 9% for Marisa DeFranco, and 2% for John Devine. This latest poll shows a drop of 5 points for Tierney (64%), and a gain of 6 points for Moultan (11%) since the April poll.
Inside the numbers
Forty-four percent (44%) of women preferred Tierney, while 39% chose Tisei. However, a majority of men favored Tisei (51%) over Tierney (35%).
Tisei continues to grow his lead among Independents from 53%-31% in April to 54% to 28% in June.
Tisei continues to hold his base of support in the western part with a 52% to 26% lead, while Tierney has his base of support in the North 48% to 40%. The Southern part of district appears to be a battleground, with an equal split vote of 42% for each. Charlie Baker, the presumed Republican nominee for governor hails from Swampscott in the southern part of the district and may offer a coattail factor for Tisei.
When asked what they felt the most important issue in the election was, a plurality of respondents (22%) selected jobs, followed by 20% choosing healthcare, and 14% choosing defense.
However, when asked about local issues, 48% said they supported an increase of the minimum wage from $8/hour to $11, while 39% opposed this increase.
47% supported casino gambling in Massachusetts, with 37% opposed; 14% are undecided.
A majority of respondents (62%) oppose an automatic increase in the state gas tax, while only 23% support it.
For issues of national interest, a majority of respondents (53% to 35%) said; society would be safer if guns were more strictly controlled. A majority (58%) supported gay marriage in the state. On another hot issue, 50% of respondents opposed the legalization of marijuana, while only 33% supported it.
The polling sample consisted of 253 likely voters, using an interactive voice response (IVR) system. The poll ran from June 12th – 18th, 2014, with a margin of error of +/- 6.12%, and a 95% confidence level.
SOURCE Emerson College Polling Society