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July 19, 2012

Marino Vulnerable in Pennsylvanias 10th District

Only 30% of voters would vote to re-elect the incumbent.
Voters in the 10th Congressional District are wide open to considering a replacement for Representative Tom Marino, and become significantly less likely to support him once they learn about his Democratic challenger, Phil Scollo. When asked whether they would vote to re-elect Marino, only 30% of voters remain in his camp, while 55% say they would consider someone else. Such a low base of support means that there is plenty of room for a challenger. An incumbent typically wants his re-elect to be over 40% to be confident going into an election.

Dissatisfaction with Marino reaches across party lines. Only 22% of Independents were likely to vote to reelect him. Even among his own party, Marino is having trouble convincing his constituents to send him back to Washington. 47% of Republicans would consider voting for someone else while only 36% would commit to supporting the incumbent. After hearing biographical statements about the two candidates, voters put Scollo well within range of Marino, giving him 36% to Marinos 44%. This shows not only that there is fertile ground in flipping votes from Marino to Scollo, but that undecided voters, with only positive information about both candidates, are more likely to favor Scollo.

20% of voters remain undecided on the second ballot, putting the Democrat squarely within striking distance. Introductory messages about Phil Scollos biography deeply resonate with voters. Two questions simply giving background about Scollos life and career were received very positively. The second, discussing Scollos personal background, saw 53% of voters report that they were much more likely to vote for him, and 71% more likely to vote for Scollo overall. Support for Scollo also increases among Republican, Independent and Democratic voters alike after being introduced to his background. Learning more about Scollo causes the biggest swing among Democrats, but the survey shows movement in less friendly terrain as well. Scollo gains 5 points on Marino among Republicans after being introduced, and the biographical introduction creates a statistical dead heat among Independents at 39% each. When introduced to some of Marinos more controversial policy positions, his support shrinks even further. 43% of voters were much less likely to vote for Marino after learning about his two votes for the Ryan budget to essentially end Medicare, including 33% of Republicans and 50% of Independents.

Much Less Likely to Support Marino After Hearing Position on Medicare 60 40 20 0 43 33 50

PPP surveyed 550 Pennsylvania 10th district voters from July 16 - 17. The margin of error for the survey is +/-4.18%. PPP surveys are conducted through automated telephone interviews.

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