Former Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz has become the first candidate in the 2012 race for the Connecticut seat currently held by independent Joe Lieberman. She will file the papers later today. Bysiewicz told me this morning she enters the race for the U.S. Senate armed with internal polls that show her defeating Ted Kennedy, Junior and Linda McMahon.
Bysiewicz says in the race for the Democratic nomination, the polling shows her ahead of Kennedy, the Branford attorney and businessman who is the emotional favorite among many Democrats in the state. The poll also shows her ahead of Congressman Chris Murphy. Congressman Joe Courtney was not included in the polling because his interest in the race was not expressed until recently.
Bysiewicz says the poll also shows her winning in a three way race with Senator Lieberman and a Republican, either McMahon or 2010 GOP gubernatorial candidate Tom Foley.
In 2009, Bysiewicz was leading Dan Malloy and Ned Lamont in the race for governor, and at the time, the Quinnipiac poll showed her to be the only Democrat running close to then Governor Jodi Rell. Rell later decided not to seek re-election. Bysiewicz then decided to launch an ill-fated run for Attorney General.
Here are the poll numbers from the Bysiewicz campaign:
The following is a summary of findings from a telephone survey conducted among700 registered voters in Connecticut. This includes a sample of 400 registered voters who are likely to vote in the general election in November 2012 and 433 registered voters who are likely to vote in the Democratic primary election in August 2012. Interviews were conducted December 13-16, 2010. The sampling error for both surveys is plus or minus 4.9 percentage points.
Connecticut Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz is in a strong position to become the next U.S. Senator from Connecticut. She boasts a strong statewide job rating as Secretary of the State (58%-24%). Moreover, Bysiewicz leads in both the general election and a Democratic primary.
She leads a general election match-up against U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman and Republican Linda McMahon (34%-30%-28%, respectively). She also leads if the Republican nominee is Tom Foley (33%-29%-27%). In a head-to-head race against Linda McMahon, Bysiewicz leads 54% to 36%.
Bysiewicz is also well positioned to win potential Democratic primary. Not only is her job rating as Secretary of the State especially strong at 74% to 15%, but she leads a three-way Democratic primary against Congressman Chris Murphy and Ted Kennedy, Jr. (33%-26%-26%, respectively). She also leads in a head-to-head against Murphy, 46% to 37%.