A new Rasmussen poll of Pennsylvania finds Sen. Arlen Specter with a lead over Rep. Joe Sestak in the 2010 Democratic primary — but it does seem a bit surprising that Specter’s lead isn’t even bigger, given his built-in advantages of incumbency and high name recognition.
The numbers: Specter 51%, Sestak 32%.
Both candidates have solid favorable ratings. Specter is at 72% favorable, including 35% very favorable, to 26% total unfavorable. Sestak is at 57% total favorable, with 18% very favorable, to 21% total unfavorable.
Specter has been in the Senate for almost 30 years, and has the full support of the Democratic establishment from President Obama on down, in the wake of his recent party switch (which, as we all know, was triggered by a Republican primary challenger). But there clearly is a genuine base of anti-Specter Democrats willing to support Sestak, so this could be an interesting primary.