Massachusetts GOP governor candidate Charlie Baker pulls ahead of Democratic opponent
New Boston Globe poll shows Mass. Attorney General Martha Coakley trailing by 9 points
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will campaign with Coakley on Friday
Massachusetts Democratic governor hopeful Martha Coakley is falling behind her Republican challenger Charlie Baker, a new poll shows.
Baker leads Coakley by 9 percentage points, 45 to 36 percent, according to a Boston Globe poll reported Friday reflecting a tide of independent voters swinging his way. That lead is outside of the survey’s 4.4 percentage point margin of error.
Although this is not the first time polling data has shown Baker leading Coakley, the latest numbers show a four percent increase for Baker from last week’s Globe poll, which showed both candidates in a dead heat at 41 percent.
These most recent numbers are a big blow for Coakley, the state’s current attorney general, in a mostly liberal state with a two-term Democratic governor. Massachusetts voters overwhelmingly chose President Barack Obama in both of his presidential elections, even when he faced Mitt Romney, the state’s former governor.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will campaign with Coakley on Friday. Former President Bill Clinton also attended a Coakley campaign event last week, and First Lady Michelle Obama has appeared in the state campaigning for Coakley.
Coakley was in the national spotlight in 2010 when she ran as a replacement for former Sen. Ted Kennedy’s seat in Congress. She lost in an upset election to Republican Scott Brown.
Baker has been gaining in the polls largely due to independents making up their minds and choosing to vote in his favor, analysts from the Boston Globe said. He leads that constituency by 37 points, with Baker and Coakley polling at 57 percent and 20 percent, respectively. With eleven more days until election day, eleven percent of voters still remain undecided.
And among women, Coakley’s lead has diminished from 11 points last week to just four in this week’s poll. Baker maintains a healthy 25 point-lead among male voters in the state.
The Boston Globe conducted the poll via telephone, surveying 500 likely Massachusetts voters from Oct. 19-Oct. 22.