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Why US Senate race in Massachusetts is Ed Markey's to lose

Ed Markey is a Democrat with high name recognition running in a blue state, and polls show him leading the GOP's Gabriel Gomez. But another US Senate race, in 2010, showed that Massachusetts voters can mete out some surprises.

Mass. Gov. Deval Patrick (l.) applauds while joining Democratic US Senate nominee, Rep. Ed Markey of Massachusetts, at a campaign event in Boston, May 8. Markey is running against Republican Gabriel Gomez in the June 25 special election.

Charles Krupa/AP

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It's Ed Markey’s race to lose.  

The veteran Democratic congressman has a seven-point lead over Republican Gabriel Gomez in the special election for US Senate in Massachusetts, according to a new poll by the League of Conservation Voters and Public Policy Polling.

The poll is the third in recent days to show Mr. Markey, a four-decade veteran of the House of Representatives, with a healthy margin over Mr. Gomez, a Navy SEAL and businessman who is making his first major foray into politics. 

A poll last week by Boston public radio station WBUR put Markey’s lead at six percentage points, while a Suffolk University/WHDH-TV poll gave him a towering 17-point advantage.

With less than six weeks until Election Day, Markey remains the comfortable favorite, although to understand why you have to read between the polling numbers, says Marc Landy, a political scientist at Boston College.


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