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Poll Shows O’Donnell Surging in Delaware

On Friday I wrote a story about how increased media attention was shedding some unflattering light on Christine O’Donnell, Tea Party candidate for the GOP Senate nomination in Delaware, making her chances of winning the primary tomorrow unlikely. Today a poll conducted over the weekend by Public Policy Polling puts O’Donnell ahead of the GOP backed Rep. Mike Castle 47% to 44%, a three point lead that is within the survey’s margin of error.

Not too much has changed for O’Donnell in the interim, with the exception of an endorsement from Sarah Palin on Thursday night and another show of support on Friday evening from Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) via Twitter, meaning these nods may be proving important:

Just 35 percent of Delaware Republicans said that they were more likely to vote for someone who had Palin’s support, while 24 percent viewed Palin’s endorsement as a negative factor, and 41 percent had no opinion.

But among those who saw Palin’s support as a positive, O’Donnell led Castle by an enormous margin of 83 percent to 13 percent.

The other big story in the polling data is Castle’s approval numbers, which have sunk significantly in the last month. While the moderate Republican has had a long and successful career representing Delaware for nearly two decades, his votes with Democrats on a few key issues this past Congress (like the Waxman-Markey House climate bill) have been getting trotted out a lot recently by right wing activists eager to see him go.

Recent polls also show that if O’Donnell does pull off an upset tomorrow, Democrat Chris Coons has a much better shot at winning the seat.

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