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Is Burke Winning the Jobs Debate?
For Walker, troubling results buried in the MU poll.
While many an armchair operative has decried Mary Burke for running a moderate and largely non-populist campaign, another within-the-margin-of-error poll shows the former businesswoman racing neck and neck with Republican Gov. Scott Walker as we head into tumultuous waters of September. While, months ago, Burke's portrayal of herself as a jobs creator may have seemed reactionary, like trying to steal the governor's script (of "creating jobs and moving Wisconsin forward"), a marginal question in the Marquette Poll spells trouble for the Walker camp, notwithstanding the margin of error. Is Burke beating Walker at his own favorite conversation? Interestingly, it's not his half-completed 250,000 jobs pledge that appears to be dragging him down so much as Burke's relative appeal and, perhaps, her outsider status. The poll calculated a favorable/unfavorable rating for Burke of 38/35 (with 24 percent saying they "haven't heard enough"), and Walker polled at about 47/50.

The margins below are tight, but they're among the strongest indicators yet that this gubernatorial contest will be a mad dash to the end.

First, the results from "likely voters" in the November election:

And second, for registered voters:

Unsurprisingly, Walker has been busy attacking Burke's record with former Gov. Jim Doyle's Commerce Department – and even going as far as targeting Trek, the Burke family business, for manufacturing bicycles overseas, a gamble that elicited a small backlash from conservatives, including the Wall Street Journal.

By the way, we recently wrote long profiles of Walker and Burke, for a grand total of more than 11,000 words. Read them all today!

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POSTED 1/12/2015