Updated at 1:34 p.m. with more details about the poll.
A new poll found Republican congressional candidate John Koster holding a slight lead over Democrat Suzan DelBene, according to KING-TV, which commissioned the survey conducted over the weekend.
KING reporter Robert Mak writes:
The poll conducted for KING 5 by SurveyUSA found that Koster leads DelBene 46 percent to 42 percent, just inside the survey’s margin of error. Men favored Koster by a 49 percent to 40 percent margin, and the two candidates were effectively tied among women — 44 percent for DelBene and 43 percent for Koster.
The race in Washington’s new 1st Congressional District, which stretches from Redmond to the Canadian border, is one of the closest in the country.
A small majority of those polled by Survey USA said they thought Koster was better able to handle issues related to the economy, rural areas, and even technology. DelBene had a successful high-tech career at Microsoft and two start-up dot-coms before running for Congress. Koster, a former dairy farmer, is a member of the Snohomish County Council.
Koster also fared better on social issues, according the KING poll. His views on social issues are the target of a new SuperPAC ad, out today.
With five weeks until voting begins, pollsters found that the candidates are tied among women and those without a college degree. Koster leads among voters under age 50, independents and men. DelBene leads among people who make more than $80,000 a year and among those who call themselves moderates.
The economy was far-and-away the issue voters cared about the most, with 59 percent of those polled saying it’s the most important. The economy also is the issue both candidates have focused on, although DelBene is trying to remind voters of Koster’s views on social issues — the second-most-important issue to those polled for KING. Seventeen percent of those polled said social issues are most important to them.
The poll also asked likely voters about their plans in other races, and found 1st District voters divided 47 percent for Republican Mitt Romney and 47 percent for President Barack Obama, a Democrat. Rob McKenna was leading in the district in the race for governor by six percentage points.
The poll surveyed 593 likely voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.1 percent.