In last Tuesday's primary, Senator Patty Murray crushed her Republican opponent Dino Rossi in King County, getting nearly 60 percent of the vote to his 27 percent. A not-so-surprising result in a reliably liberal area. But now: weirdness. As a recent poll shows that Murray has no advantage over Rossi in the same place where she just whomped him.
As the P-I reports, a SurveyUSA/King 5 poll released on Friday showed that Rossi and Murray were neck-in-neck in King County, tied with 48 percent. This despite the fact that she bested him by 120,000 votes earlier in the week.
Even stranger is that the people behind the poll are generally acknowledged as some of the best in the business. As polling expert Nate Silver declared back in June, SurveyUSA is very consistent, has virtually no partisan bias and actually "contradicts the notion that a 'robopollster' need be inferior."
The obvious answer is that without Tea Party candidate Clint Didier, Rossi doesn't have to compete for votes amongst the conservative set. But that wouldn't explain such a strange and drastic bump in his numbers.