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Walker: not surprised by close re-election polls

MIDDLETON, Wisc (WSAU-Wheeler News)  Governor Scott Walker says he's not surprised that he leads his possible Democratic challengers by only 2-to-6 points in the latest Marquette Law School poll. He told reporters in Middleton yesterday that his campaign always expected a close race for next fall.

The statewide Marquette poll shows that the Republican Walker has a two-point lead over Mary Burke, 47-to-45 percent. He leads Senator Kathleen Vinehout 47-44, and Assembly Minority Leader Peter Barca 48-42. Burke is the only Democrat running so far.

The poll also showed that at least 70-percent did not know enough about any of the three possible challengers to form an opinion. Marquette pollster Charles Franklin says it's no big deal, with the election still 371 days away. At this point, he says Democrats express support for their party and political leanings, rather than a specific person.

Burke campaign spokesman Joe Zepecki says the poll shows that Wisconsin remains politically divided, and it's open to quote, "new leadership that's about solving problems, not picking fights."

Walker's new approval rating in the Marquette poll is 49-percent, up from 48 in July. Eight-hundred voters were surveyed over four days last week. The error margin was three-and-a-half percent either way.