Poll: Hirono in solid shape in Senate primary

Hirono, who was born in Japan, is the choice candidate of Democrats in Washington, who are promoting her as part of a prospective class of female Democrats running for the Senate and pointing out that she would be the first female immigrant to serve in the Senate.

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Despite the presence of another Democrat and former House member in the primary, Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (Wash.) gave her personal endorsement to Hirono last week, telling reporters she expected Hirono to win. Case used the endorsment as an opportunity to paint himself as the outsider and underdog, accusing Hirono in a statement to The Hill of "selling her candidacy to D.C. insiders."

Absent from the poll was any head-to-head matchup between Hirono and Lingle, even though the poll included only Democrats, who would be expected to be supportive of Hirono against a Republican. Democrats have privately expressed concerns that Lingle holds the potential for major crossover support from Democrats due to the pragmatic and non-ideological approach to governing she exhibited as governor.

The poll of 800 Democratic primary voters was conducted Nov. 15-19 and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

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