The latest poll released Thursday shows Slaughter at 52 percent and Brooks at 42 percent. Siena's research shows voters believe Slaughter will do a better job in Washington on the big issues like health care, education and war. Slaughter and Brooks are running for what will be the new 25th congressional district of New York, which is mostly Monroe County.
Both candidates were at an event at Nazareth College Thursday afternoon. The congressional candidates shook hands, and even applauded each other, quite a difference from how their campaigns have been run.
Thursday, Slaughter said she's not counting on the 10-point lead she has in the Siena poll for a win in November, "absolutely not, you know me better than that," said Slaughter, "I don't ever count votes until they go into the machine." Slaughter says people in the area have voted for her time and time again, and that she has been there when they needed her.
Maggie Brooks isn't surprised by the results, saying she knew she was the underdog when she decided to run, with Slaughter being a 26 year incumbent. Brooks says there's still a lot of campaigning to do before the November election, "the race is really just beginning," said Brooks, "we're both on television now we both have ads that are going to talk about the contrast in our records."
Timothy Kneeland, a political science professor at Nazareth College says the race could be a lot closer than the poll is letting on, when voter turnout, and independent voters are factored in. He says the amount of registered democratic voters is giving Slaughter the edge right now, but independent and undecided voters favor Brooks, "certainly there's more democrats registered to vote but they're less likely to come out perhaps than republicans , republicans tend to be more faithful voters so if it's a ten point gap that might actually be closer to a seven point gap and then if you bring in the undecided voters and again these independents who have less certainty about who they're going to vote for that really could make this a much tighter race."