Poll: Castle vs. Coons race tightens

    The Rasmussen Reports poll still shows a double-digit lead for Castle in the key battle for the U.S. Senate seat in Delaware, but Coons is closer. Castle still holds a big advantage in fundraising.

    The gap has narrowed in the race to fill the U.S. Senate seat formerly held by Vice President Joe Biden, according to a new poll.

    The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of likely voters in Delaware finds Congressman Mike Castle, a Republican, with 47 percent support. Democrat Chris Coons received 36 percent, his best showing yet.

    In April, Castle held a 55 percent to 32 percent advantage.

    It’s the first time Castle’s support has dipped below 50 percent.

    Castle is being challenged in the state’s September 14 GOP primary by conservative activist Christine O’Donnell. Rasmussen Reports did not conduct a Castle versus O’Donnell primary poll, but O’Donnell did garner more support in a possible match-up against Coons, 41 percent to 39 percent.

    In an e-mail statement, O’Donnell says this poll “totally debunks the myth that challenger candidates like me, true citizen politicians, can’t win in general elections.”

    In other campaign news, Castle continues to enjoy a big fundraising lead over O’Donnell in the Republican primary. Castle’s campaign reports raising $837,000 in the quarter ending June 30. He ended the quarter with more than $2.6 million on hand.

    O’Donnell, meanwhile, reports raising more than $100,000 in the quarter, and ending the quarter with more than $70,000 on hand.

    Coons reported raising about $697,000, leaving him with total cash on hand of about 953,000.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.