• WisPolitics

WisPolitics.com Poll: Feingold Leads Michels in Advance of 1st Debate

Oct. 1, 2004


Jeff Mayers
WisPolitics.com Editor and President

MADISON – U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold, D-Wis., has a 52 percent – 39 percent lead over Republican opponent Tim Michels in a new statewide poll of Wisconsin residents who expect to vote Nov. 2, according to a Sept. 22-26 poll commissioned by WisPolitics.com.

Feingold and Michels meet in their first debate on Friday night at Milwaukee Public TV. The debate is sponsored by the Wisconsin Broadcasters Association and will be broadcast live around the state. WisPolitics.com will webcast the debate next week at www.wispolitics.com for those who miss it or want to see it again.

Feingold, of Middleton, is seeking his third six-year term in the U.S. Senate. His major opponent is Michels, a construction executive from Oconomowoc, who won a four-way Republican primary on Sept. 14 to win the right to oppose Feingold in the general election.

The Sept. 22-26 telephone poll of 562 residents who say they’ll vote in the November election has a margin of error of plus-or-minus 4 percent. It was conducted by Harris Interactive, which manages the venerable Harris Poll.

Those polled were asked: "If an election for U.S. senator were held today between Tim Michels for the Republicans and Russ Feingold for the Democrats, for whom would you most likely vote?"

The results:
52 percent Russ Feingold
39 percent Tim Michels
9 percent answered "neither of these" or "not sure"

Regional breakdowns indicated Feingold strongest in the Madison area and the city of Milwaukee. Michels polled strongest in the Milwaukee suburbs and Waukesha County, the breakdowns suggested.

Poll results also showed Feingold was better known and better liked at this point. Feingold scored a 52 percent favorable rating from those polled, compared to a 34 percent unfavorable rating. Michels had a favorable rating of 33 percent and an unfavorable rating of 16 percent, but 16 percent were not sure and 35 percent didn’t recognize his name.

Friday’s debate is one of six U.S. Senate debates. WisPolitics.com is co-sponsoring an Oct. 16 debate in Eau Claire.

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See the campaign press releases. Go to www.wispolitics.com and click on "Press Releases" in the top right-hand part of the page.

See the latest campaign spin at www.wisopinion.com

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