Utah Incumbents Lead Opponents in New Poll

Sen. Bob Bennett (search) and Reps. Jim Matheson (search), Rob Bishop (search) and Chris Cannon (search) all showed healthy leads over their challengers in a new poll.

The Dan Jones & Associates survey of 920 registered voters statewide was conducted for KSL-TV and the Deseret Morning News, which reported the results in a copyright story Tuesday.

It found Republican Bennett leading his Democratic challenger, former Utah Attorney General Paul Van Dam, 61-24 percent.

Democrat Matheson led Republican challenger John Swallow 58-29 percent in the 2nd U.S. House District.

Bishop, R-Utah, led Logan City Councilman Steve Thompson, a Democrat, 55-24 percent in the 1st District, and Republican Cannon led South Salt Lake City police Capt. Beau Babka 56-22 percent in the 3rd District.

The poll results "are good news for me," Matheson said. "I think running this strong shows people know I put Utah first, my constituents first, that I'm not a rubber stamp for any party."

"This is about where we expected to be," Swallow said. "We haven't run any TV (commercials), so we expected to be between 25-to-35 percentage points behind."

Swallow said he'll start running TV ads in mid-to-late September, and predicted he'll also start closing on Matheson then.

Two years ago, Matheson beat Swallow by less than 1 percentage point.

The margins of error in the survey were plus or minus 3.5 percent in the Senate race and around 6.5 percent in the House districts.