Obama, Mikulski still score high in Maryland
Republican renaissance? What Republican renaissance? In Maryland, at least, national Democrats are still riding high.
According to a new statewide poll, Barbara A. Mikulski heads into the 2010 mid-term election with her status intact as Maryland's most popular politician.
The survey, by Clarus Research Group of Washington, showed the Democratic senator with a job approval rating of 57 percent, a good score for an incumbent at a time of widespread voter discontent and economic malaise.
A majority of Maryland voters surveyed -- 53 percent -- said they would like to see the Senate's senior woman get another six-year term. Only 36 percent wanted someone new in the job.
Mikulski, already running for re-election, has drawn three Republican rivals so far. None of them is well-known statewide or attracting a significant amount of campaign money (the first test for a challenger).
The state's junior senator, Ben Cardin, now halfway through his first term, had a 46 percent approval rating and 26 percent disapproval score in the poll. He won't face voters again until 2012.
President Barack Obama, who carried Maryland last year with 62 percent of the vote--his fifth-best showing nationally--has kept his job approval higher in the state than in the country as a whole.
A total of 60 percent of Marylanders surveyed said they approved of the job Obama is doing. In the most recent Gallup daily tracking poll, the president's job approval rating was 50 percent nationally, tied for the lowest mark of his presidency.
The poll of 637 Maryland voters by Clarus, a non-partisan survey organization, was conducted by telephone interviewers between Oct. 30 and Nov. 2. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.9 percent, according to Clarus.