Democrat Makes Her Case in Race Against Burr

Posted November 19, 2009 at 5:07pm

As national Democratic officials continue to cast about for a candidate to unite behind in North Carolina’s Senate contest, the campaign of Secretary of State Elaine Marshall (D) — who is already in the race — released an analysis of recent polling data on Thursday that attempts to make the case for why she should be the establishment choice in the race against Sen. Richard Burr (R).

The memo by Marshall’s polling firm, Lake Research Partners, draws on two recent polls to come to the conclusion that “Senator Burr is vulnerable. Voters have a net-unfavorable impression of him and a strong plurality is ready to vote for someone else. Secretary Marshall is well-liked and a strong competitor against Burr.”

The memo may be an overt attempt to catch the eye of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, who is often viewed as a king maker in Senate primaries.

The memo comes just days after the DSCC’s top prospect in the race, Rep. Bob Etheridge (N.C.), decided to skip the Senate race and instead run for re-election in 2010. In the wake of that announcement Democratic sources indicated that the DSCC would try to get former state Sen. Cal Cunningham to reconsider his recent decision to pass on the Senate contest.

Cunningham, who is popular among progressives in the Tar Heel State, had been quietly putting together a campaign organization in recent months with the help of the DSCC.