Poll: Kathleen Kane Leads Democratic Attorney General Race

Republican firm Harper Polling says its survey has Kathleen Kane in front of the Democratic field for attorney general, despite her recent troubles.

Harper Polling - PA Democratic Attorney General poll - Kathleen Kane leads

Harper Polling polled Democrats for the state attorney general primary. Kathleen Kane, the current indicted AG who does not have a law license, leads the other candidates right now. (Courtesy Harper Polling)

Kathleen Kane has a lot on her plate now. For example, last month at the Constitution Center she gave a press conference where she displayed a video of pornographic and offensive emails on a 30-foot screen. This was to defend herself in a current scandal that has seen her be indicted for perjury and obstruction of justice, have her law license suspended and have state lawmakers weigh removing her from office.

There is an enormous backstory to this scandal, that has cost many others their jobs and reputations. But Kane may have been hit harder by it than anyone. Yet she’s running for re-election as state attorney general, and Democrats may be ready to call her blameless: In a new poll from Republican firm Harper Polling, Kane is leading the democratic field.

Kane gets 31 percent of Democratic support. Thirty percent of voters are undecided. Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala gets 18 percent, Montgomery County Commissioner Josh Shapiro gets 13 percent and Northampton County DA John Morganelli gets 8 percent. (To note, as the firm does in its release, Harper Polling conducts survey research for State Sen. John Rafferty, a GOP candidate for Attorney General.)

Obviously: It’s incredibly early, and the other candidates have an easy attack on Kane in debates and ads as she’s, you know, been indicted and doesn’t have a law license. Kane claims her innocence, however, and even if she’s removed by the senate she could run again for the office. Only a felony conviction would prevent her from holding the job. Her trial date has not been set.

Attorney general race without Kane

Courtesy Harper Polling

The poll without Kane is interesting, too, as right now it’s a Pittsburgh vs. Philly battle between Zappala and Shapiro. Zappala gets 20 percent, Shapiro 19 percent and Morganelli gets 12 percent. For both polls, Harper polled 640 likely Democratic primary voters using interactive voice response on January 22nd and 23rd. The margin of error is +/- 3.81 percent.

Meanwhile, today a Pennsylvania Senate special committee said the senate should only try to remove her form office if her law license remains suspended. Kane had her license suspended by the court last year, but filed a petition to have the court re-examine its decision now that Michael Eakin has been suspended after being ensnared in the email scandal. The court, which once had a Republican majority, has a Democratic edge after the latest election.

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