Poll shows most voters undecided about Dem. primary in 2016 U.S. Senate race

Written by Ben Allen and Radio Pennsylvania | Sep 18, 2015 4:04 AM

Photo by AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis

(Harrisburg) -- Three Democrats are running for a chance to compete against Republican U.S. Senator Pat Toomey in what's expected to be one of the country's most closely watched races.

A recent poll, taken before Braddock Mayor John Fetterman jumped in the race, shows Katie McGinty and Joe Sestak are virtually tied for the Democratic nomination.

But about two-thirds of respondents to the Franklin and Marshall poll say they're undecided about the two.

"McGinty's going to be the consensus candidate of the party, that goes without saying. And I think she will have the resources of the party. But Sestak is indefatigable. There's no one that campaigned harder, no one who will work harder than he will," says pollster Terry Madonna.

"Most of what we're seeing now in the polls are name recognition. So obviously Toomey is much better known than Joe Sestak, he's much better known than Katie McGinty, the two Democrats who would like to replace him."

Respondents favored incumbent Pat Toomey over both Democrats, but gave McGinty a better chance.

Between 30 and 40 percent were undecided on questions about the general election - which is more than a year away.

The primary is set for April 26th, 2016, but a proposal in the legislature calls for moving it up to March.

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