WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - A survey released Wednesday afternoon from the Civitas Institute reveals that Republican candidate Ilario Pantano and Democratic incumbent Mike McIntyre are basically tied for the race for NC's 7th Congressional District.
The poll comes from SurveyUSA and included opinions from 450 registered voters in the district taken last weekend.
46% support Pantano, while 45% support McIntyre. Another 9% are undecided.
When you break out the numbers by those most likely to vote, Pantano's advantage expands to 52% to 42%. Republicans strongly favor Pantano in this poll with 81% and he also enjoys 61% of the unaffiliated vote.
McIntyre's campaign sent out the following statement on the poll late Wednesday.
"We do not take any vote for granted, and we are excited to have the enthusiastic support of Democrats, Republicans and Independents moving us forward to an Election Day victory and that's why our polls show us in the lead.
The political atmosphere across the country has more people engaged, which is great for democracy in action. As citizens educate themselves about the candidates and issues, there is a choice— Mike McIntyre who concentrates on job creation and economic development (endorsed by US Chamber of Commerce and the National Federation of Independent Business); fights for senior citizens to protect their Social Security and Medicare (recognized by the National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare); and has worked to enhance and expand services for our veterans (endorsed by the VFW-PAC).
Or Ilario Pantano who supports reckless trade policies that will ship jobs oversees, seeks to privatize social security and who is unfamiliar with Southeastern North Carolina. The clear choice is Mike McIntyre."
Pantano Campaign Manager Andy Yates said, "These new numbers confirm the momentum we've felt on the ground for the last two months. Voters across the 7th District are rejecting the failed Pelosi-McIntyre agenda and they are embracing Ilario and his strong conservative message. This is an historic poll. For the last 14 years, Congressman McIntyre has won reelection by an overwhelming margin, and he's never trailed in an independent poll. The times have changed, and it is clear the voters are tired of Congressman McIntyre."
McIntyre, who identifies himself as a Blue Dog Democrat meant to portray a conservative fiscal record, is considered a moderate by 46% of voters. 21% believe he is conservative, while 19% say he is liberal. 14% aren't sure.