(CNN) - Republican state assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava appears to have the advantage in the race to fill the U.S. House seat from New York formerly held by John McHugh, now the Secretary of the Army.
According to a new survey from Siena College released Thursday, Scozzafava has a 7-point lead over Democrat Bill Owens, 35-28 percent, in next month's special congressional election in the state's 23rd district.
Doug Hoffman, a conservative third-party candidate who has won some high profile national endorsements, registers 16 percent in the poll.
The district encompasses a broad swath of upstate New York and bends solidly Republican. McHugh won his 2008 reelection race by nearly a 2-1 margin.