Republicans have the momentum going into Election Day for the U.S. Senate seat held by Arlen Specter for three decades in Pennsylvania.
A Reuters/Ipsos poll of likely voters showed Republican Pat Toomey with a 10-point lead, 47-37 percent, over Democrat Joe Sestak. That gap narrowed among a broader pool of registered voters to 40-37 percent.
Sestak beat Specter in the Democratic primary after the senior senator from Pennsylvania turned Democrat in April 2009 ahead of his battle for re-election to the Senate seat he first won as a Republican 30 years ago. President Barack Obama had backed Specter.
The poll shows it wouldn’t have made any difference if Specter had won the Democratic primary, with likely voters in Pennsylvania supporting Toomey over Specter 52-40 percent.
“This suggests that the GOP has genuine momentum here outside of the identities of individual candidates and isn’t necessarily just benefiting from the fallout from the Democratic Primary,” Ipsos pollsters say.