The new UNH Granite State poll, conducted by my colleague Andrew Smith, provides little support for the notion that Sarah Palin's endorsement last week had some sort of immediate, Kryptonite-like effect on GOP Senate candidate Kelly Ayotte.
But it does hold some measure of good news for Paul Hodes, whose campaign has been anxiously watched by fellow Democrats for signs of life.
As mentioned in an earlier post, Public Policy Polling's survey suggested Hodes was having problems consolidating his base among New Hampshire liberals. UNH shows just the opposite. Note the spike in Hodes's support among liberals since the spring:
The same trend toward Hodes is developing more broadly as Democrats "come home":
Exactly the same sort of consolidation is happening at the opposite ideological pole. Presented with a clear choice, New Hampshire conservatives are flocking to the candidate closest to their own beliefs.
(N. B. I use the Ayotte-Hodes head-to-head here, but conservatives gravitate to the other three GOP candidates just as readily.)
And the same phenomenon is happening more broadly among all Republicans. (Again, I use Ayotte's numbers here, but other GOP candidates unsurprisingly also do very well among their own.)
Although it remains to be seen whether Democrats will equal Republicans in enthusiasm this fall, they do slightly outnumber them in terms of registered voters. One wonders, however, whether the competitive September primaries will boost the GOP past the Democrats once again.