U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (D) has a double-digit lead over his challenger, state Sen. Jim Oberweis (R), according to a newlyreleased poll.
The latest Rasmussen Reports survey has 51 percent of likely Illinois voters giving Durbin the nod, compared to 37 percent for Oberweis. Of those surveyed, 8 percent say they’re undecided and 4 percent say they’d rather vote for someone other than those two.
Durbin is running for his fourth term in the Senate where he’s been the majority whip, the number two Democratic Senate leadership position, since 2007. He won his last bid for reelection in 2008 with 68% of the vote.Durbin is backed by 86% of Democrats and leads his opponent 42% to 34% among voters not affiliated with either major political party. Oberweis, who also ran unsuccessfully for Congress and governor in Illinois in the past, draws support from 81% of Illinois Republicans.
On Monday, Durbin and Oberweis sparred at an endorsement debate in front of the Chicago Tribune editorial board, with some heated moments on the topics of guns, immigration, Oberweis’ primary residence and Durbin’s involvement with the IRS.
The Rasmussen survey shows that 82 percent of those surveyed who support President Barack Obama giving amnesty to illegal immgrants without the approval of Congress also support Durbin. Sixty-one percent who oppose such a move give their support to Oberweis’ campaign.
Overall, 55 percent of those surveyed have a favorable opinion of Durbin, while 45 percent say they have a favorable opinion of Oberweis.
Earlier this month, an exclusive Early & Often poll showed Oberweis was gaining on Durbin and was trailing by 7 percentage points.