A new poll today finds newly-anointed GOP nominee Dino Rossi leading Democratic Sen. Patty Murray in the Washington Senate race, which is some good news for a candidate that's trailed in general-election matchup polling.


SurveyUSA finds Rossi ahead of Murray by seven percentage points, 52% to 45%, following an August 18-19 automated phone survey of 1,000 Washington adults. The poll may signify a solid lead, or it may be an outlier: in its own August 18 poll, Rasmussen found Murray ahead four percentage points.

At this point, Washington looks like a close race that could swing either way.

While the SurveyUSA poll is a feather in Rossi's cap, it comes as he's in a bit of a spat with his former primary opponent, Clint Didier, who was endorsed by both Sarah Palin and Ron Paul. Didier said he'd endorse Rossi if the nominee agreed to a set of requests, including that he introduce Ron Paul's "Sanctity of Life Act" in the Senate and sign onto an anti-tax pledge. Rossi won't agree to these things, hence no endorsement has been issued. Washington is not a picture of post-primary GOP unity.

Didier collected 12% in the open primary (which included Murray) last week, less than half of Rossi's 34%.

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