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New Polls Show Dems Catching Up In Two Crucial Pa. Races

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HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — One day after a Quinnipiac University poll showed the Democratic candidate closing the gap in the race for US Senate, a new Quinnipiac poll shows the Democrat running for Pennsylvania governor also gaining ground.

The new poll shows Democratic gubernatorial candidate Dan Onorato has wiped out most of the 15-point lead that Republican Tom Corbett held in the university’s previous poll, a month ago.

The latest poll shows Corbett ahead by only five points among likely voters, 49 to 44 percent.

Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, says Onorato has accomplished that feat even though the popularity of incumbent Democrat Ed Rendell continues to suffer:

“He has a 54 to 39 percent job disapproval rating, which probably is a drag on Democrats — and specifically the Democrat who wants to succeed him.”

Brown says Democratic voters are becoming more engaged in the race. 

Meanwhile, a new Muhlenberg College tracking poll shows Corbett with a nine-point lead in the race for governor, while the US Senate race between Pat Toomey and Joe Sestak is a dead heat.

Reported by KYW Harrisburg Bureau Chief Tony Romeo.