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Maine Gov race is dead heat: poll

Three Gov Candidates - LePage, Cutler, Michaud - smallA Rasmussen poll released Tuesday shows Republican Gov. Paul LePage and Democratic challenger U.S. Rep. Michael Michaud tied in the 2014 Maine governor race.

The survey of 830 likely voters found LePage and Michaud both have the support of 40 percent of voters, while independent candidate Eliot Cutler is the choice of 14 percent of voters. Six percent of respondents said they are supporting another candidate or are not sure.

Of all the polls published this year, this latest one finds the strongest support for LePage, who was elected in 2010 with 38 percent of the vote. While the top line results of the poll are available to the public here, The Maine Wire has obtained a copy of the cross tabulations which measure respondents attitudes’ to a host of other questions.

For example, when asked which candidate they trust more to deal with government spending, 43 percent said LePage, while 35 percent and 13 percent, respectively, chose Michaud or Cutler. Similarly, when asked which candidate they trust more to deal with taxes, 41 percent said LePage, while 36 percent said Michaud and 12 percent said Cutler. On “social issues,” however, Michaud has a slight trust advantage. When asked who they trust more on social issues, 41 percent said Michaud, while 33 percent said LePage and 14 percent said Cutler.

The implication from those question is clear: If the election conversation is about spending and taxes, the advantage is to LePage. But if social issues like abortion and same-sex marriage become a big part of the conversation, Michaud will benefit.

According to the poll results, 47 percent of respondents said they somewhat approve or strongly approve of LePage.

The poll sample comprised 30 percent Republicans, 35 percent Democrats, and 35 percent “other”.

The results from other questions about Obamacare and attitudes towards the role of government reflect those from an earlier Rasmussen poll of the Maine senate race.

Both polls confirm that a majority of Mainers view Obamacare unfavorably and prefer a smaller government with fewer services and lower taxes. Despite those results, President Obama’s approval rating remains above water, with 51 percent of likely voters saying they strongly or somewhat approve of his performance.

This post will be updated.

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