A new survey by Public Policy Polling (D) shows Rep. Stephanie Herseth Sandlin (D-SD), a Democrat from a red state, running ahead but nevertheless in a competitive race for her 2010 re-election campaign.
Herseth Sandlin has a 49% approval rating, to 38% disapproval, well ahead of President Obama’s 41%-52% rating in this state. She is ahead of Republican state Rep. Blake Curd by a 52%-31% margin, but is in a much closer race against Secretary of State Chris Nelson by only 46%-39%. The margin of error is Â±3.7%.
From the pollster’s analysis: “Herseth Sandlin’s standing is a good microcosm of the difficulties Democrats face this year in Republican areas. Even though she is personally popular and did vote against the health care bill, she still only has a single digit lead against a relatively unknown opponent. If Nelson turns out to be a good candidate this race will be highly competitive but it’s hard to say there’s really anything Herseth Sandlin should be doing differently — it’s just not going to be easy in places where Obama and the Congressional leadership are so unpopular.”