NRSC - NEW POLL: Ayotte 46%, Hodes 32%

As an important reminder, more than 20 consecutive polls have shown Kelly Ayotte leading Paul Hodes in New Hampshire since June 2009.

As CNN’s Paul Steinhauser notes below, “Democrats' hopes of capturing a Republican held Senate seat in New Hampshire appear to be fading… The poll indicates Ayotte holds a more than two to one advantage over Hodes among independent voters, and holds a seven point margin over Hodes in his own congressional district.”

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2010/09/27/poll-gop-odds-of-keeping-n-h-senate-seat-improving/

Poll: GOP odds of keeping N.H. Senate seat improving

CNN

By Paul Steinhauser

September 27, 2010

Democrats' hopes of capturing a Republican held Senate seat in New Hampshire appear to be fading, according to a new poll.

According to an American Research Group survey released Monday, 46 percent of likely voters in New Hampshire support former state attorney general Kelly Ayotte, the GOP nominee, with 32 percent backing two-term Rep. Paul Hodes, the Democratic nominee, and one in five undecided.

The poll indicates Ayotte holds a more than two to one advantage over Hodes among independent voters, and holds a seven point margin over Hodes in his own congressional district. Ayotte also leads by 15 points among women voters and by 13 points among male voters.

Ayotte survived a crowded and competitive primary battle while Hodes faced no serious competition in the September 14 contests. The winner in November succeeds retiring Republican Sen. Judd Gregg.

According to the survey, the battle for governor is a dead heat. Forty-two percent of people questioned support the Democratic incumbent, three-term Gov. John Lynch, with 40 percent backing GOP nominee John Stephen, a former state official, and 14 percent undecided. Lynch's two point margin is within the poll's sampling error. Stephen holds a seven point advantage among independent voters.

The poll's release comes on the same day that Vice President Joe Biden teams up in New Hampshire with Hodes and Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, helps out Stephen.

The American Research Group's "The New Hampshire Poll" was conducted September 22-26, with 800 likely voters questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.