Election 2010: Indiana Senate
Indiana Senate: Coats (R) 51%, Ellsworth (D) 30%
Indiana still has the look of a likely Republican Senate pickup, with former Senator Dan Coats remaining comfortably ahead of his Democratic
The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Voters in the state finds Coats with 51% support, while Ellsworth earns 30% of the vote, his poorest showing to date. Six percent (6%) favor some other candidate in the race, while 12% remain undecided.
Last month, Coats dropped below 50% but still led Ellsworth 47% to 33%.
In five previous surveys back to February, support for Coats has ranged from 46% to 54%. In that same period, Ellsworth has picked up 32% to 36% of the vote.
The two candidates are contending for the seat held by Senator Evan Bayh who surprised his fellow Democrats with his announcement in January that he would not seek reelection. Bayh, who faced a tough GOP challenge, was still the favorite in the race at the time, but now the seat is rated Solid GOP in the Rasmussen Reports Senate Balance of Power ratings.
Just nine percent (9%) of Indiana voters rate the economy as good or excellent, while nearly half (49%) say it’s poor. Twenty-four percent (24%) say it’s getting better, but twice as many (48%) think it’s getting worse.
Coats, who previously served as a senator from Indiana from 1989 to 1999, holds double-digit leads among both male and female voters. He holds a better than three-to-one lead among voters not affiliated with either major party.
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The survey of 500 Likely Voters in Indiana was conducted on June July 7-8, 2010 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
Opposition to the national health care bill remains high in Indiana, traditionally a conservative, Republican leaning state. Fifty-nine percent (59%) favor repeal of the bill that Ellsworth supported as a member of the House, while 35% oppose repeal. This is a higher level of support than is found nationally. This includes 49% who Strongly Favor repeal and 21% who are Strongly Opposed.
Seventy-three percent (73%) of those who Strongly Favor repeal support Coats, while Ellsworth earns 78% of the vote from those who Strongly Oppose it.
Support in Indiana for Arizona’s new immigration law parallel findings nationally. Sixty-one percent (61%) of Indiana voters favor passage of a law like Arizona’s in their state, and just 25% oppose such a bill.
Coats gets 64% support from those who favor an Arizona-like law in Indiana. Fifty-eight percent (58%) of those who oppose a law like that favor Ellsworth.
Twenty-eight percent (28%) of all voters in the state agree with the Justice Department’s decision to challenge the Arizona law in court, but 57% disagree with that decision.
Fifty-one percent (51%) of those who agree with the challenge back Ellsworth. Sixty-three percent (63%) of voters who disagree with the Justice Department action favor Coats.
Sixty-three percent (63%) of Indiana voters, however, favor a welcoming immigration policy that only excludes national security threats, criminals and those who come here to live off the U.S. welfare system. Twenty-four percent (24%) disagree with a policy like that.
Coats is viewed Very Favorably by 13% and Very Unfavorably by eight percent (8%). Eighteen percent (18%) have no opinion of the former senator.
Ten percent (10%) have a Very Favorable opinion of Ellsworth, while nine percent (9%) view him Very Unfavorably. Twenty-eight percent (28%) don’t know enough about him to voice any kind of opinion.
At this point in a campaign, Rasmussen Reports considers the number of people with a strong opinion more significant than the total favorable/unfavorable numbers.
Sixty-one percent (61%) of Indiana voters think the country is in a recession.
Twenty-eight percent (28%) believe the $787-billion economic stimulus plan helped the U.S. economy, but 38% say it hurt. This is close to voter sentiments nationally.
Twenty-six percent (26%) say the government spending in the stimulus plan created new jobs. Fifty-six percent (56%) disagree and say it did not create any new jobs.
Sixty-seven percent (67%) believe cutting taxes is a better way to create new jobs than increased government spending. Just 14% say increased spending is the way to go.
Forty-three percent (43%) of Indiana voters approve of President Obama’s job performance, while 56% disapprove. That’s in line with findings last month and a higher level of criticism than Obama earns nationally in the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll.
Sixty-six percent (66%) now approve of how GOP Governor Mitch Daniels is performing, up eight points from the previous survey. Thirty-one percent (31%) disapprove.