Boxer and Fiorina Are in a Close Race

The latest Field poll looks a bit troubling for Sen. Barbara Boxer: she leads her Republican opponent, former HP CEO Carly Fiorina, by just three percentage points (47% to 44%), but the less encouraging sign comes in her own popularity, as 52% hold an unfavorable view of her. From the San Francisco Chronicle write-up:

"She is vulnerable," Field Poll director Mark DiCamillo said. "This is very ominous for her."

One of Boxer's more vexing problems, analysts say, is that opposition to her is not just about her. She has become an avatar for broader voter frustrations about the struggling economy, President Obama and the growth of the federal government.

"It's a reflection of the effectiveness of a Republican strategy to characterize Sen. Boxer as everything that's wrong with the government," said Larry Berman, a professor of political science at UC Davis. Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nev., another longtime Democrat facing a tough re-election challenge, faces a similar predicament, Berman said.
On the other hand, Fiorina has yet to be defined--37% don't know who she is, and her favorable/unfavorable numbers are close (34% favorable/29% unfavorable)--so there's time and space yet for Boxer to shape things. Get the full numbers at the San Fancisco Chronicle.

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Chris Good is a political reporter for ABC News. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and a reporter for The Hill.

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