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July 13, 2010

Mikulski has 25-point lead over next challenger

Speaking of polls, a new survey by Rasmussen Reports indicates Democratic Sen. Barbara Mikulski appears to have little to worry about at this stage of her bid for a fifth term.

The telephone poll of 500 likely voters in Maryland conducted July 8 showed Mikulski with a 25 point lead over Queen Anne’s County Commissioner Eric Wargotz, perhaps her best-known Republican challenger. Fifty-eight percent planned to vote for Mikulski, 33 percent for Wargotz and 2 percent for some other candidate. Seven percent were undecided.

The margin is similar to that in February, Rasmussen’s only previous report on the Maryland Senate race, when Mikulski had a 54-33 advantage over a generic Republican candidate.

To go with the solid support of the state’s Democratic majority, Mikulski enjoys a 53-28 edge among voters not affiliated with either major party, according to the July survey.

Other findings from Rasmussen, which reported Monday that the race between Repubilcan former Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. and Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley is a statistical dead heat:

Forty-four percent of Maryland voters rate the economy as bad, and 42 percent say it is getting worse. Eleven percent view the economy as good, and 35 percent say it is getting better. The responses are slightly more positive than the national view.

Forty-two percent of Maryland voters believe the $787 billion economic stimulus plan helped the economy, 13 points higher than the national view. But only 32% say the government spending in the stimulus plan created new jobs. Forty-eight percent say it did not. Twenty-eight percent say the plan hurt the economy.

Posted by Matthew Hay Brown at 5:14 PM | | Comments (14)


Interesting information. If I recall correctly, this is a low number for Mikulski at this point in an election cycle. Considering the last challenger, Senator Pipkin in 2006 only garnered a little over 33% in the general election, it would seem to me that this information gives the Wargotz folks and his supporters something to chew on and work towards overcoming in the next several months as they march towards the general election. Commissioner Wargotz, is clearly the primary leader and most credible in terms of experience in fiscal matters, ground support and dollars (albeit limited) among the 11 in the primary, His signage in the State is growing quickly as you might have noticed. I would say he "seems to own" the 50/301 corridor. It also appears that at this point, he really does have a shot at this if he can close the gap. I certainly wish him well and much luck and will do what I can to help him in the coming months.
Best Wishes for a successful campaign and God-willing a win for all Marylanders.

This Democrat will do whatever I can to make sure O'Malley and Mikulski are not replaced.

Jonathan, a February Rasmussen poll had Mikulski leading an unnamed generic Republican candidate by 18 points, 54% to 36%. This week's Rasmussen poll has Mikulski leading Wargotz by 25 points, 58% to 33%. In other words, Wargotz is doing worse now than a generic candidate did a few months ago. That doesn't sound like GOP progress to me.

As for numbers from Mikulski's last race, a June 2004 Gonzales poll had Mikulski leading Pipkin by 31 points, 61% to 30%. An October 2004 Gonzales poll had Mikulski's lead over Pipkin reduced to 24 points, 58% to 34%. Mikulski wound up beating Pipkin by 31 points, 64.8% to 33.7%.

Considering Margins of error for each make the results nearly identical. One must understand polling methodology and margins of error. The results can be nearly the same and frankly, they are. This time naming Wargotz.. He definitely has a shot.

How does this do-nothing politician do this? Not sure if it isn't more to do with the irrelevancy of the GOP in this liberal state.

I had never heard of Eric Wargotz until I read the name of filed candidates. I have no idea why anyone believes Dr Wargotz is the nominee and will win the primary election/ or if he can beat Barbara. Who is Wargotz????

Dr. Wargotz is the elected President (ballot) in Queen Anne's County. He is the most credible candidate in the crowded republican primary according to sources. This is based on "his proven electability, his stature as a physician, his state-wide organization and people he has attracted to his campaign and his lead in campaign funds raised among the group.
From the data it is clear he has work to do if he is to actually beat Miklulski but seems he is off to a reasonably good start for more visit his web site like I did. very impressive fellow.

Wait till the November election.

Voters will vote for ANYONE but babs and this will surprise all in the dem party.

I'm voting for independent and repubs ONLY in this socialist state.


Keep waiting. A Tea Party candidate just lost a primary in A-L-A-B-A-M-A.
Thats like missing the cut in Tee-ball.

Funny. A clear majority in this state see Maryland and the US moving in the wrong direction on the economy, but a clear majority are willing to reelect Babs? The country may be learning that we need to get the establishment out and fresh people in, but the majority of the people in this state certainly haven't learned that lesson.

umm you all have clearly not heard of jim rutledge the only one of the republican challengers to have a statewide campaign. you know whats even more troubling for wargotz is that is the only area he has support he is a rino at best who has donated to steny hoyer among other dems. he backs health care for illegals, and said that sen snowe was a person he could be modeled after. if that isn't a rino i don't no what is

Good point above. Wargotz is polling lower than a generic Republican did back in Feb, maybe due to his out of control spending as QA county commissioner. Jim Rutledge is the real contender on the Republican side. A real conservative, popular with Tea Partiers, endorsed by Pat McDonough, and Jim won every one of the half dozen Senatorial debates so far. Wargotz and hasn't bothered to show up since he got beat so bad in the frist debate. Another debate in Cambridge on Monday. Will Wargotz bother to show up to a debate in his own back yard?

The so-called Tea Party movement has had tons of free publicity all year long. If it had any traction in Maryland, one would expect the GOP's numbers to be trending upwards, and Mikulski's numbers to be trending downwards, between February and June. The fact that the reverse has occurred can't be explained away as being in the margin of error.

We'll see. Wargotz is the only proven conservative among the bunch. having cut taxes twice, increased transparency and cut government budget. Fought government pork and wasteful stimulus dollars in his own back yard. Proof will be on sept 14th as to who is running the best campaign and strategy. I say Wargotz is with higher name recognition across the State due to a broader presence, favorable reputation, image (NOT a trial attorney), and solid character.

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About the bloggers
Annie Linskey covers state politics and government for The Baltimore Sun. Previously, as a City Hall reporter, she wrote about the corruption trial of Mayor Sheila Dixon and kept a close eye on city spending. Originally from Connecticut, Annie has also lived in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, where she reported on war crimes tribunals and landmines. She lives in Canton.

John Fritze has covered politics and government at the local, state and federal levels for more than a decade and is now The Baltimore Sun’s Washington correspondent. He previously wrote about Congress for USA TODAY, where he led coverage of the health care overhaul debate and the 2010 election. A native of Albany, N.Y., he currently lives in Montgomery County.

Julie Scharper covers City Hall and Baltimore politics. A native of Baltimore County, she graduated from The Johns Hopkins University in 2001 and spent two years teaching in Honduras before joining The Baltimore Sun. She has followed the Amish community of Nickel Mines, Pa., in the year after a schoolhouse massacre, reported on courts and crime in Anne Arundel County, and chronicled the unique personalities and places of Baltimore City and its surrounding counties.
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