-PPP finds the race for Governor of Washington tied, with Jay Inslee and Rob McKenna each at 42%. McKenna had led 40-38 on PPP's only previous poll of the race, last May. The reason Inslee has closed that small gap is that he's now getting the same percentage of the Democratic vote- 81%- that McKenna is getting of the Republican vote.
Inslee's share of the Democratic vote has gone from 68% to 81%, while McKenna's share of the GOP vote has increased just slightly from 79% to 81%. McKenna continues to lead by double digits with independents, 43-31, but the vanishing of the party unity gap has knotted this race up.
Both of the Gubernatorial candidates are well liked with voters in the state and they've pulled about even on name recognition. 68% of voters are familiar with McKenna and he has a 39/29 favorability. 64% know Inslee and he has a 36/28 favorability. There aren't a lot of races these days where we find voters liking both of their choices.
-The vote on gay marriage in Washington looks like it should be pretty close. 50% of voters say they'll vote to uphold the law legalizing gay marriage, while 46% say they would vote to repeal it. You see the standard huge generational gap on this issue. Young voters support gay marriage 63/32, while seniors oppose it 56/39. Even if voters do repeal the law this fall, it's pretty clear the direction things are moving in.
While Washington voters are closely divided on marriage itself, 78% support some form of legal recognition for gay couples in the form of marriage or civil unions while only 20% think they should have no rights at all. Even 59% of Republicans at least support civil unions. That may bode well if there's a repeal vote this fall- almost all voters in the state are at least somewhat accepting of same sex relationships.
-Washington voters are also leaning toward legalizing marijuana. 47% of voters say they're currently inclined to vote yes on Initiative 502 to 39% who are opposed. This leads by double digits with every age group except for seniors, who oppose it 45/35.
-Christine Gregoire continues to be one of the most unpopular Governors in the country with 40% of voters approving of her to 53% who disapprove. The only Governors we've found with a higher disapproval rating than her in the last year are Hawaii's Neil Abercrombie and Florida's Rick Scott. Sometimes voters soften their feelings toward an outgoing incumbent as they leave office but that's not the case here.
-Patty Murray has a 50% approval rating, with 43% of voters disapproving of her. That's basically identical to where we found her last May, at 50/42. Only about a third of Senators have an approval at or above 50% in our polling, so those are pretty decent numbers.
Full results here