The tie is broken for now, with Republican Meg Whitman, coming off last weekend’s state GOP Convention, moving out to her best showing yet in the race to be the next governor of California.
The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Voters in California finds Whitman earning 48% support, while Democrat Jerry Brown picks up 40% of the vote. Six percent (6%) prefer some other candidate in the race, and six percent (6%) are undecided.
These new numbers move California from a Toss-Up to Leans GOP in the Rasmussen Reports Election 2010 Gubernatorial Scorecard.
Early this month, Brown was slightly ahead 43% to 41% in a contest that has been neck and neck since last September. Brown, currently the state’s attorney general, bounced briefly ahead immediately following the state Democratic Convention in April, but the race tightened again in June after Whitman’s Republican primary win.
Prior to the latest numbers, Whitman, the former CEO of eBay, has earned 38% to 47% support in seven surveys back to February. Brown, in those same surveys, has captured 40% to 46% of the vote.
When leaners are included in the new totals, Whitman posts a 51% to 43% lead over Brown. Leaners are those who initially indicate no preference for either of the candidates but answer a follow-up question and say they are leaning towards a particular candidate.
Early in any campaign, the numbers without leaners are generally more significant. Later in a campaign, the numbers with leaners matter more. After Labor Day, Rasmussen Reports will report the numbers with leaners as the primary indicators of the campaign.
Seventy-five percent (75%) of those who favor Whitman say they are already certain how they will vote in November. Eighty-two percent (82%) of Brown’s supporters say the same.