How is it that former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, the GOP's establishment-backed candidate for Senate in California, has quickly shot into the lead in the Republican primary? After having been down by double-digits against former Rep. Tom Campbell, she's now ahead by an even bigger double-digit margin, according to a pair of recent polls. The answer appears to be mainly money and a well-timed television ad campaign going into the home stretch of the June 8 primary -- along with a big push by conservatives against Campbell.
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As recently as last week, a Daily Kos/Research 2000 poll gave Campbell a lead of 37%-22% over Fiorina in the GOP primary. But now, SurveyUSA gives Fiorina an even bigger lead of 46%-23%, and Public Policy Polling (D) similarly has her ahead of Campbell by 41%-21%. (The other candidate, Tea Party-backed state Rep. Chuck DeVore, has consistently polled in third.) The TPM Poll Average gives Fiorina a sudden lead with 29.1%, Campbell 27.0%, and DeVore 15.9%, after Campbell had led in polling for this primary all year.