Embattled Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has been in the midst of his toughest political test in his short career in the blue state in which he bested opponents in an effort to recall him in the last election cycle.
For weeks Walker has been polling neck and neck with Democrat opponent Mary Burke who has been the beneficiary of serious out-of-state money and key labor union investments in a sort of payback scheme to take out the guy who ended a generations-old collective bargaining regime in the state.
But now a new Marquette University poll is suggesting that Walker may have the edge. By a five-point margin, the poll shows Walker leading Burke with just 30 days left until the election.
Marquette’s Charles Franklin explained to Politico, “This still qualifies as a very close race.” But Marquette attributes the Walker lead to two potential factors.
First, after details were revealed that Burke plagiarized her jobs plan from another source, Republicans have been hammering her in TV ads that question her character. Her precipitous drop in the polls came directly after.
Second, analysts point to the fact that Walker still has a relatively healthy approval rating among Independent voters, whom register large in Wisconsin. These voters break decisively to Walker over Burke and could be the deciding factor in guaranteeing him reelection.
If Walker emerges victories in November, it is believed his momentum will swing directly into a renewed effort to test the water for a presidential bid in 2016.