Are You Ready for Campaign 2010? - NBC 7 San Diego

Are You Ready for Campaign 2010?

Sen. Feinstein proves most popular potential candidate for governor

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    Patrick Walton
    The long wait for Nov. 4 has finally passed, leaving Californians with a new focus: the 2010 race for governor.

    The long wait for Nov. 4 has finally passed, leaving Californians with a new focus: the 2010 race for governor.

    A Field Poll conducted throughout the end of October surveyed 527 registered voters and found that Democratic U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein had the highest rating among potential candidates. Democratic Attorney General and former governor Jerry Brown was next on the list.

    Former eBay executive Meg Whitman, state Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner and former Rep. Tom Campbell made up the three Republican candidates, none of who generated much attention. The poll showed that somewhere between two-thirds and three-quarters of voters -- Democratic and Republican -- had no opinion toward the three.

    San Francisco Mayor Gain Newsom, a Democrat, had the highest unfavorable rating, with 41 percent. This potentially resulted from his association with same-sex marriage, which was in heavy debate during the polling.

    Lt. Gov. John Garamendi is the only candidate that has already declared his candidacy in the 2010 race. Newsom and Poizner haven’t declared but have formed exploratory committees.

    Feinstein has not yet said whether she would run, even though the poll showed her to be favored amongst 70 percent of surveyed Democrats.

    Though Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger did not serve two complete terms, he is not eligible to run again for office. Because the Governor's first term, which followed the 2003 recall of former Gov. Gray Davis, covered more than half of Davis' remaining time in office, he is still considered to have reached the term limit.  

    Of the remaining Democratic candidates, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa gained a positive response from 36 percent of Democrats, Garamendi showed 30 percent, and state Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell showed 14 percent.

    Of the three Republican candidates, Whitman gained a 23 percent positive response from Republicans, Campbell showed 19 percent, and Poizner showed 12 percent.