New poll shows Markey with wide lead over Kennedy in Massachusetts


Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) leads primary challenger Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D-Mass.) by double digits, according to a UMass/Amherst poll released Wednesday.

Markey leads Kennedy among Democratic and Democratic-leaning voters 51 percent to 36 percent in the poll, with 12 percent undecided. When Democratic-leaning voters are removed from the sample, Markey expands his lead to 50 percent to 32 percent,  but the percentage of undecideds also increases to 17 percent.

The poll’s results were considerably narrower in February, when Markey led Kennedy only 43 percent to 40 percent. Markey still led slightly but the margin separating the two was the same without leaners, 39 percent to 36 percent.

Asked which candidate they trusted to handle nine issues, respondents named Markey for all but one. A plurality of voters trusted him most to handle the economy, health care, taxes, education, climate change, President Trump, transportation and the coronavirus pandemic. Race relations are the only issue where Kennedy leads, 39 percent to 37 percent.

Sixty-seven percent of respondents said Markey shared their views on the issues facing the nation either “very well” or “somewhat well.” Sixty-three percent said the same of Kennedy. Sixteen percent said Markey did not share their views on those issues at all, compared to 20 percent who said the same of Kennedy.

Pollsters surveyed 500 registered Massachusetts voters between July 31 and Aug. 7, including 199 likely primary voters registered as Democrats and 163 independent likely primary voters. The poll has a 5.9-point margin of error for all registered voters and a seven-point margin of error for likely primary voters.

The primary is set for Sept. 1. Markey, unlike many Democratic incumbents facing primaries, has been endorsed by several progressive figures such as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and actress and activist Jane Fonda.

Tags Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Chuck Schumer Donald Trump Ed Markey Elizabeth Warren Joe Kennedy Joe Kennedy III Massachusetts

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