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PA-Gov: New poll shows Wolf with big lead — but GOP opponent Wagner hits back with different data

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A new poll shows Pennsylvania Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf (right) has a big lead over Republican Scott Wagner (left) in the race for the state's governor seat in November. But Wagner's campaign on Thursday called the poll's numbers "inaccurate and misleading" while trotting out survey findings of its own that show Wagner trailing Wolf by just 7 points. (Image source: YouTube screenshot, composite)

Pennsylvania Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf has a big lead over Republican Scott Wagner in the race for the state's governor seat this fall —48 percent to 29 percent — according to new poll from Franklin & Marshall College.

But Wagner's campaign on Thursday called the poll's numbers "inaccurate and misleading" while trotting out survey findings of its own that show Wagner trailing Wolf by just 7 points.

What else does the Franklin & Marshall poll show?

About 23 percent of voters are undecided, the poll said, with more independents (23 percent) and Republicans (30 percent) than Democrats (16 percent) having not chosen a candidate yet.

And almost half (47 percent) of the state’s voters said they don’t know enough about Wagner — who served as a state senator and resigned his seat last week to run against Wolf full time — to have an opinion about him.

The poll results are based on responses from 472 Pennsylvania registered voters — 224 Democrats, 185 Republicans and 63 independents — with a 6.5 percent margin of error.

What else did Wagner's campaign say?

Wagner's campaign brushed off the Franklin & Marshall poll, calling the outfit "left leaning," and pointed out another F&M poll that showed Hillary Clinton leading Donald Trump, 49 percent to 38 percent, a month before the presidential election. Trump ended up beating Clinton in the Keystone Stone by less than 1 percentage point.

More from the Wagner campaign:

The poll is fundamentally flawed on several levels, but one that our campaign wants to highlight is the most basic component of the survey – the partisan breakdown of the participants. The self ID portion of the poll has Democrats at 51% and Republicans at 41% (Democrat +10), with the registration at 48% Democrat and 39% Republican (Democrat +9). Democratic turnout has never outweighed Republican turnout by 9 points in recent Pennsylvania history.

The Wagner campaign also commissioned a survey by McLaughlin & Associates, which PennLive characterized as "GOP pollsters." That survey said Wagner trailed Wolf 28 percent to 35 percent among voters who said they're "definitely" voting for the candidate of their choice.

The McLaughlin & Associates survey also found Wagner leads Wolf among voters who have an opinion of both candidates, 53 percent to 45 percent, the Wagner campaign said.

Wagner spokesman Andrew Romeo on Thursday told TheBlaze the percentage breakdown of respondents to the McLaughlin & Associates poll was 43.5 percent Republican and 48 percent Democrat.

What did the Wolf campaign have to say about the Franklin & Marshall poll?

The Wolf campaign said the governor's big lead is "affirmation that the governor is hitting all the right buttons with voters," PennLive reported.

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