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Poll: 52nd District Race Continues To Tighten

New Voters Could Sway Results In 52nd Congressional District

The race for San Diego's 52nd Congressional District seat is tightening, with a new 10News/U-T San Diego poll showing Republican Carl DeMaio has a slight lead over Democratic Rep. Scott Peters.

SurveyUSA interviewed 650 registered voters from the 52nd District by phone from Oct. 2 through Oct. 6.

When asked whom they would vote for if the election were held today, 48 percent said DeMaio and 45 percent went with first-term incumbent Peters. The poll has a 4.3 percentage point margin of error.

Respondents were asked who is most trustworthy among the two candidates, and 48 percent went with DeMaio, while 44 percent sided with Peters.

According to SurveyUSA, compared to a poll three weeks ago, DeMaio is now up two percentage points, while Peters is now down two points.

Political consultant Laura Fink told 10News, "This race remains a dead heat in spite of the thousands of dollars that have been spent."

Among male voters, DeMaio leads by 12 percentage points; among independent voters, DeMaio leads by 18 points.

When asked which of the following issues is the most important in selecting a candidate, 35 percent said integrity, 11 percent said leadership, 24 percent said fiscal responsibility and 21 percent said the ability to reach across party lines.

Overall, both men scored about the same on a variety of issues, but when it comes to fiscal responsibility DeMaio clearly outshines, scoring 81 percent compared to Peters' 15 percent.

10News asked Fink if fiscal responsibility is so important to voters, why isn't DeMaio doing better in the polls.

"There's a direct link between the attack ads that have been levied against Peters and his number there," she said. "Those ads are working."

Fink doesn't expect to see a major shift in the poll numbers. She believes this congressional race will be razor tight right up until Election Day on Nov. 4.

DeMaio served on the San Diego City Council from 2008-2012 and was a front-runner in the 2013 mayoral race but lost to Bob Filner, who later resigned.

Peters served two four-year terms on the City Council from 2000 to 2008. Upon terming out, he served on the Port of San Diego Board of Commissioners.

DeMaio and Peters are scheduled to debate at 1:30 p.m. Thursday. It will be streamed live on 10News is a KPBS media partner.

What questions do you have about the Statewide General Election coming up on Nov. 8? Submit your questions here, and we'll try to answer them in our reporting.