Democratic poll: Sheheen narrowly trails Haley in 2014 governor’s race

ashain@thestate.comOctober 22, 2013 

S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley holds a slight edge on Democratic challenger Vincent Sheheen in their 2014 gubernatorial rematch, according to a poll done for the Democratic Governors Association.

Haley, a Lexington Republican, leads 44 percent to 40 percent, according to the poll from Clarity Campaign Labs.

Sheheen, a state senator from Camden, trails Haley within the poll’s margin of error – of plus or minus 3.53 percent. He lost by 4.5 percentage points to Haley in 2010.

However, Sheheen is leading Haley 44 percent to 30 percent among independents, the poll said.

The poll surveyed 760 registered voters on both land phone lines and cell phones last week from a sample of likely 2014 voters “based on past vote history patterns to reflect a midterm electorate in South Carolina,” Clarity Campaign Labs said in a memo to the Governors Association released Tuesday.

Democrats said the poll’s findings – that Sheheen was within the margin of error in a Republican-heavy state – were good news for the Camden lawyer.

“These numbers confirm what we know and other statewide public polls have shown – Nikki Haley’s time as governor has been a disaster and South Carolinians are ready for change,” Sheheen campaign manager Andrew Whalen said. “Vincent Sheheen’s record of working across the aisle and plan to build an economy from within is clearly resonating with voters across the state.”

Haley’s campaign called the survey “bogus.”

“It’s not surprising that Washington Democrats would concoct a bogus, partisan ‘poll’ to try to shore up Vince Sheheen’s failing campaign,” Haley campaign spokesman Rob Godfrey said. “This is nothing but a propaganda tool.”

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