Democratic Congressman Mike Michaud leads in the race for Maine governor with 40% of the vote in a new poll released today by the Maine People's Resource Center. Republican incumbent Governor Paul LePage garners the support of 34% of likely voters and independent candidate Eliot Cutler trails with 17%.
In a two-way match-up, Michaud would win handily with 56% of the vote to 36% for LePage.
Other results from the survey show Senator Susan Collins in a strong position for re-election, a majority of Mainers in support of the immigration reform bill passed by the U.S. Senate, and a large majority against a bill that would weaken Maine's anti-discrimination protections for gays and lesbians.
Governor LePage is viewed favorably by 38% of respondents, with 57% viewing him unfavorably. LePage has maintained favorability and job performance ratings of between 38% and 42% in all MPRC polls since he began his term in 2011, indicating that a series of recent, controversial comments made by the governor have not significantly eroded his standing.
Eliot Cutler is viewed favorably by 26% of likely voters, with 46% viewing him unfavorably and 21% unfamiliar with the candidate. Congressman Mike Michaud was the only gubernatorial candidate with a net-positive favorability rating, with 56% viewing him favorably and 31% unfavorably.
An unnamed Democratic candidate had the support of only 26% of respondents in a 2014 U.S. Senate race, compared to 60% for incumbent Senator Susan Collins. If he switched races and ran for U.S. Senate, independent Eliot Cutler would do only slightly better, with 28% to Collins' 57%.
28% of respondents said they would support a new law "that would allow businesses and organizations to deny services to gays and lesbians if it violates their religious beliefs," with 61% opposed.
53% of respondents said they supported the immigration reform bill passed by the U.S. Senate and now being considered by the House, with 30% opposed.
The poll of 652 likely voters was conducted September 8th-10th and has a margin of error of +/-3.84%, 95 times out of 100.