Poll: Orrin Hatch Might Be In Trouble

Posted November 9, 2010 at 10:57am

A new poll showed Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch could be in as much political trouble in 2012 as his Utah colleague Sen. Bob Bennett, who was defeated for re-election in the May state GOP convention.
According to a Mason-Dixon Polling & Research survey conducted for the Salt Lake Tribune, 48 percent of voters would vote for someone other than Hatch, 40 percent would vote for Hatch and 12 percent were undecided.
Among Republicans only, 60 percent said they would vote to re-elect Hatch. Before facing GOP voters in a primary, however, he would first need to get through the convention, which Bennett was unable to do.
The poll was taken of 625 registered voters Oct. 25-27 with a 4-point margin of error.
“Given the nationwide skepticism of political leaders today, these numbers look pretty good,” Hatch told the Tribune in response to the poll. “Polls come and go but I’ve always found Utahns support the honest hard work and effective service I perform.”

Hatch has a conservative voting record but has moved further to the right over the last year. For example, he voted against Elena Kagan for the Supreme Court even though he’d supported her to be solicitor general one year before.

The Tribune reported that Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R) was considering his options and could decide by the end of next year whether to challenge Hatch. Also a possibility to run is Rep. Jim Matheson (D), who said he would wait to see how the Congressional districts are redrawn before making any future plans.