WASHINGTON (CNN) - Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is trailing one potential Republican challenger by 10 points in a hypothetical 2010 matchup, a new poll suggests, and he's not faring much better against another possible opponent.
Reid trails Nevada GOP chairwoman Sue Lowden, 49 percent to 39 percent, according to a Mason-Dixon poll commissioned by the Las Vegas Review-Journal and released Sunday. Reid is also losing by a 48-43 margin in a hypothetical race against another leading candidate for the Republican Senate nomination, businessman Danny Tarkanian.
Although Reid is likely to raise millions and get a helping hand from national Democrats, Nevadans appear to have an overall negative opinion of their senior senator, who doesn't have much wiggle room to improve his image. Nearly 100 percent of Nevada voters know who Reid is, and 50 percent of them hold an unfavorable view of the Democrat. Just 38 percent have a favorable opinion.
So is Reid facing the same fate of another Senate party leader, former South Dakota Sen. Tom Daschle, who famously stumbled in his re-election bid? The man in charge of electing Democrats to the Senate doesn't think so.
"Harry Reid is not Tom Daschle and this is not South Dakota," Menendez said late last month, referring to Daschle's 2004 loss to Republican John Thune. "I would not bet against Harry Reid by any stretch of the imagination."
Reid's campaign manager Brandon Hall brushed off the poll results.
"Senator Reid has never put much stock in polls," Hall said in an e-mail. "The Republican candidates in this race are still supporting many of the policies that got us into the mess that Senator Reid is working every day to get us out of. As the election draws closer and voters are presented with a choice between moving our economy forward and the status quo, we are confident that Senator Reid's vision of moving forward will prevail."