New Democratic poll results say Mark Critz is maintaining a 10-point lead over Republican challenger Keith Rothfus in the PA12 congressional race.
A poll memo released by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee says Critz, of Johnstown, has a 50-40% lead over the Sewickley attorney in a territory that's tricky for pols in both parties. Mitt Romney enjoys a 9-point (51-42%) lead over Barack Obama in the newly-designed district, which exactly matches Obama's 2008 loss to John McCain there (of 54-45%). At the same time the memo says GOP members of Congress are unpopular in the district north and east of Pittsburgh, with 29% percent saying they are "very unfavorable" toward them.
Favorable ratings for Democrats in Congress aren't reflected in the memo, but it says U.S. Sen. Bob Casey leads Republican Tom Smith 51-43%, which is lower than the 18-point lead the incumbent enjoyed statewide in the last Quinnipiac poll.
Critz led Rothfus 46-36% in a study the Democrat's campaign released in late June. As we noted earlier it's shaping up to be one of the most-watched congressional races in the country, let alone the state.
Said Rothfus spokesman Jonathan Raso:
If the liberal democrats behind the Critz campaign are actually satisfied with their poll, they should release it in its entirety including cross tabs. Instead of career politician Congressman Critz releasing biased topline numbers as a typical political tactic, he owes it to the people of Southwestern Pennsylvania to answer the following questions: Why did Congressman Critz stand with President Obama in defense of his disastrous healthcare bill and vote to raid Medicare of $741 billion, leaving our seniors' health at risk? Why has Congressman Critz stood shoulder to shoulder with President Obama and his failed economic policies, leaving his home county with 9.3% unemployment and the rest of the workers of Southwestern PA struggling? Why does Congressman Critz think we should keep him and President Obama in Washington when he has so badly failed the twelfth district, and when we at home are so desperately in need of a change in direction?
And Critz spokesman Mike Mikus:
This poll shows what we are seeing as Mark travels the district. He is in a strong position and grows stronger as the voters learn about his record of fighting for jobs and protecting Social Security and Medicare.
I would be very concerned if I was Keith Rothfus. He's been campaigning for three consecutive years and can't gain any traction because the people know that he wants to end Medicare as we know it and force seniors to pay $6400 more per year for health care.
The latest poll memo from the DCCC is below (click image for larger version):