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UMass poll has Markey with a wide lead over Gomez in Senate race

AP FILE PHOTO
Democratic U.S. Senate hopeful U.S. Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass.

AP FILE PHOTO Democratic U.S. Senate hopeful U.S. Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass. Purchase photo reprints »

Democratic U.S. Representative Edward Markey has an 11-point lead over Republican Gabriel Gomez among likely voters in advance of the Massachusetts special U.S. Senate election scheduled for June 25, according to a statewide poll released today by the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Markey and Gomez are contesting the open Senate seat created by John Kerry becoming Secretary of State.

Markey leads 51 percent to 40 percent among likely voters, and among registered voters Markey’s lead is 10 points (47 percent to 37 percent). With only 6 percent of likely voters identifying themselves as “undecided,” the directors of the poll said they see little opportunity for Gomez to close the gap.

“With just a couple of weeks left in this campaign, there appears to be little chance of another surprise like we had when Scott Brown upset Martha Coakley in 2010,” said Brian Schaffner, chair of the political science department at UMass Amherst and director of the poll.

“Time is against Gomez,” added Raymond La Raja, associate director of the UMass poll. “Without a major gaffe by Markey soon, it is becoming very difficult to see a path to victory for Gomez.”

What’s helping to prop Markey up is his approval rating among women. While Markey has a narrow lead among men (46-43 percent), his lead among women is 19 points (56-37 percent). This gender gap is similar to that observed in Elizabeth Warren’s victory over Brown in 2012, poll analyzers observed.

Meanwhile, Gomez is leading Markey by 17 points (50 percent-33 percent) among independents. Partisan voters remain committed to their respective candidates. Gomez captures 98 percent of GOP voters, while Markey gets 87 percent of Democratic voters, who outnumber Republican registrants by a two-to-one margin, the poll states.

Although Gomez has portrayed himself as a moderate Republican, he loses self-described moderate voters by 16 points (53-37 percent).

For more results from this poll — including how the candidates poll on issues such as gun control, taxes and women’s health — visit the full results here.

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