Despite the strong Republican leanings of South Carolina’s 1st district it looks like Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch is on track to win the special election. According to a new PPP poll she holds a nine point lead over former Gov. Mark Sanford. From PPP:
PPP’s newest poll on the special election in South Carolina finds Democrat Elizabeth Colbert Busch expanding her lead to 9 points over Mark Sanford at 50/41. Green Party candidate Eugene Platt polls at 3%.
Colbert Busch’s lead is on the rise for several reasons. She has a 51/35 advantage with independents. She’s winning over 19% of Republicans, while losing just 7% of Democrats. And it also seems that after last week’s revelations about Sanford that a lot of GOP voters are planning to just stay at home- while the district supported Mitt Romney by 18 points last fall, those planning to turn out for the special election voted for him by only a 5 point spread.
Sanford continues to be unpopular in the district with 38% of voters rating him favorably to 56% with a negative opinion. 51% say the revelations about his trespassing last week give them doubts about his fitness for public office.
The past few days have not been kind to Sanford’s campaign. Last week it was revealed that Sanford had trespassed at his ex-wife’s home and soon after the NRCC dropped their support. This looks more like a race Sanford lost than a race Colbert Busch won.
It is amazing given that this should have been a safe seat for Republicans that the GOP was incapable of recruiting anyone better. This was a clear structural failure for a national party.
The special election takes place May 7th.