The new Rasmussen poll of the Minnesota gubernatorial race gives the Democratic nominee, former U.S. Sen. Mark Dayton, a substantial lead over Republican state Rep. Tom Emmer and Independence Party candidate Tom Horner, coming on the heels of Dayton's narrow win in Tuesday's Democratic primary.
The numbers: Dayton 45%, Emmer 36%, and Horner 10%. The survey of likely voters has a Â±4% margin of error. In the previous poll from three and a half weeks ago, Dayton led Emmer and Horner by 40%-36%-10%. The TPM Poll Average gives Dayton a lead of 44.2%-33.6%-9.9%
The poll shows that Dayton, who defeated the state party convention's official choice of state House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher by less than one point -- with the help of some self-financing on his own part -- has solid favorable ratings at 53% favorable to 43% unfavorable. By contrast, Emmer is at only 40%-50%, probably thanks to extensive press coverage of some gaffes and right-wing positions. Horner, a former moderate Republican, is at 35%-36%.