|With all 100 counties in North Carolina having reported their primary results, State Senator Kay Hagan is the overwhelming choice of North Carolina Democrats to take on absentee Elizabeth Dole in November. Hagan has taken over 60% of the primary vote, followed by businessman Jim Neal at 18% and Marcus Williams at 12.6%.Hagan is well-positioned to challenge Dole. A Research 2000 poll from about a week ago commissioned by Daily Kos sees Dole leading Hagan by only a seven-point margin, 48-41. Given that Dole is presumably at maximum name ID and that she rarely touches 50% in any approval poll (that isn’t commissioned by her campaign or her partisans), she has little room to grow. On the other hand, Hagan is still expanding her name ID beyond her State Senate district. And polling indicates that her paid media campaign is incredibly effective. This won’t turn into a Tier 1 race overnight, but every indication is that this is a strong Tier 2 race with much potential.Hagan is a moderate, probably not progressive enough for the liking of some in the blogosphere. But she is a proud Democrat. Further, her effectiveness and competence as a legislator has won acclaim:
I’ll also remind readers that among the netroots’ biggest victories are Southern moderates like Jim Webb of Virginia. And I’m not the only one likening Hagan to Webb, as Real Clear Politics asks “Hagan The Next Webb?“:
Hagan is currently in better shape than Webb was at this point. And Dole’s unfavorables are far higher than Hagan’s. While Dole does enjoy a money advantage, a $3 million bankroll isn’t what it used to be, especially when the DSCC has a $20 milllion cash-on-hand advantage over the NRSC with which to aid Hagan’s bid.
In short, Dole is vulnerable. Her disapproval is relatively high and her approval seems to have a ceiling in the mid-to-high 40s. Meanwhile, Hagan’s messaging appears to be very effective, and she has a great deal of upside. And it’s only a seven-point race with about six months until Election Day.
All Hagan needs is the resources to stay competitive. To help on that front, State Senator Kay Hagan, the Democratic nominee for Senate in 2008 against Elizabeth Dole, has been added to the Expand the Map! ActBlue page.
Please consider a contribution to Hagan – it’s a step toward kicking Elizabeth Dole out of the Senate, and that should be reward enough.
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