Poll: Sanford erases 9-point deficit, takes small lead

RALEIGH, NC (WIS/WCSC) - A new poll indicates former Governor Mark Sanford has erased the 9 point lead his Democratic opponent held over him just two weeks ago.

According to Raleigh-based Public Policy Polling, Tuesday's special election in South Carolina's 1st Congressional District is now too close to call. Sanford leads Elizabeth Colbert-Busch 47-46.

Two weeks ago, the same poll showed Colbert-Busch out in front 50-41.

The pollsters attribute the dramatic change in numbers to Sanford's push to nationalize the race and paint Colbert-Busch as a liberal.

"The special election in South Carolina couldn't be much closer," said Dean Debnam,
President of Public Policy Polling. "At this point it's just a question of whether voters are
more put off by Mark Sanford or the Democrats in Washington."

"We're gonna keep pushing, we're just gonna keep pushing for every vote," said Colbert Busch after learning about the new poll results.

Sanford believes voters are judging him differently since the last poll. "I think that poll was taken in the wake of the story that suggests that I would have been creeping around with a cell phone at my ex's house, which was not the case," Sanford said. "People began to say wait a minute, it was just the Super Bowl with his son and then taking him home. That's a very different picture."

The special election will take place on May 7.

PPP surveyed 1,239 likely voters on May 4th and 5th. The margin of error for the survey
is +/-2.8%. This poll was not paid for or authorized by any campaign or political
organization. PPP surveys are conducted through automated telephone interviews.

Copyright 2013 WISTV/WCSC. All rights reserved.