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Richard Blumenthal survives

The results of the new Quinnipiac poll on Connecticut's U.S. Senate validate the aggressive strategy that Attorney General Richard Blumenthal employed after the New York Times published evidence that he'd often exaggerated his Vietnam-era service record. He has a 25-point lead over likely GOP rival Linda McMahon, down from a 33-point lead before the scandal.

Let's remember what happened. Blumenthal quickly put together an event with veterans where he admitted the mistake but came short of apologizing. At the same time, the McMahon campaign -- which was looking at winning the party's Senate nod at the upcoming weekend convention -- issued statements taking credit for the oppo hit on Blumenthal. That threw up a dust cloud of sorts, and the story became a muddle, with the Times digging for more evidence of Blumenthal flubs and Democrats criticizing the paper and the GOP for a smear.

This is one poll, but it's gospel in Connecticut. And not even Rasmussen showed McMahon taking a lead over Blumenthal. I think it's obvious what happened: McMahon's rush to take credit for the hit softened its impact while making her look like what her expensive campaign swears she's not -- a typical politician. Just look at this amazing number. By a 33-point margin, 60-27, voters say Blumenthal is "honest and trustworthy." The margin on that question for McMahon is only 21 points, 45-24. If both candidates did themselves permanent damage last week, then Blumenthal, who started with a massive poll, has the advantage. Hey, Ann Coulter saw it coming.

By David Weigel  |  May 27, 2010; 8:40 AM ET
Categories:  2010 Election , Conservatives  
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