Democrats hold edge in two key House contests

With the election just a week away, Democrats lead in two of the state’s most closely watched congressional races but are battling to hold on amid far greater enthusiasm among Republican voters, according to new Boston Globe polls.

US Representative Barney Frank, Democrat of Newton, leads his Republican challenger, Sean Bielat, by 13 percentage points among likely voters in the Fourth Congressional District. In the race for the open seat in the neighboring 10th District, Norfolk District Attorney William R. Keating leads state Representative Jeffrey D. Perry by 4 percentage points, within that survey’s margin of error.

In both races, however, supporters of the Republican nominees say they are more excited about the election, which often correlates to higher turnout on Election Day, said Andrew E. Smith, the director of the University of New Hampshire Survey Center. The center conducted the polls for the Globe.

Among those who say they are excited about Nov. 2, Bielat and Perry have double-digit leads, the polls indicate.

“There’s more enthusiasm on the part of all Republican voters,’’ Smith said. A Globe poll on the gubernatorial race released yesterday found a similar enthusiasm gap between Republicans and Democrats.

Among likely voters in their districts, Frank leads Bielat, 46 percent to 33 percent, while Keating leads Perry, 37 percent to 33 percent, the polls found. The surveys, of 385 likely voters in the Fourth District and 349 voters in the 10th, had margins of error of 5 percent and 5.2 percent, respectively. Both were taken from Oct. 17-22.

All 10 Massachusetts seats in the House of Representatives are held by Democrats, but Republicans, energized by Scott Brown’s surprise victory in the special Senate election in January, say this is their best chance in years of breaking Democratic dominance of the House delegation. There are contests in all but one district.

Full Story: Democrats hold edge in two key House contests – The Boston Globe