(CNN) - A new poll indicates that Sen. Patty Murray of Washington leads her Republican challenger Dino Rossi by eight points.
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According to CNN/Time/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Wednesday, 51 percent of likely voters in Washington State back the three term senator, with 43 percent supporting Rossi, who was the GOP gubernatorial nominee in 2004 and 2008, with two percent undecided. Murray's eight point advantage is down from a nine point lead from mid-September.
Among the larger sampling of registered voters, Murray holds a narrower 48 to 44 percent margin over Rossi, down from a 50 to 44 percent advantage last month.
"Washington is one of the few states CNN has polled in this fall in which Democrats and Republicans are equally enthusiastic about voting," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "Combine that with a voting population that has trended Democratic in its past voting behavior and we see a state in which the likely voter model adds a couple of points to the Democratic candidate."
The survey indicates that Murray has an overwhelming lead among Democrats, while Rossi has an overwhelming lead among Republicans and holds a 49 to 39 percent advantage among independent voters.
"It looks like the traditional gender gap is being amplified by identity politics in a race between a Democratic women and a Republican man," Holland adds. "Murray has a two-to-one lead among women, while Rossi has a 15-point lead among men. Rossi wins among all independents, but a quarter of them support the Tea Party. When you factor out those voters and boil it down to truly non-partisan independents, Murray has a 21-point lead among that smaller group."
According to the survey, 48 percent of likely voters approve of the job President Barack Obama's doing in the White House, with 47 percent saying they disapprove. Among all adults, 48 percent give Obama a thumbs up while 42 percent disapprove.
The CNN/Time/Opinion Research Corporation poll was conducted October 8-12, with 1,510 adults, including 1,340 registered voters and 850 likely voters questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points, with a sampling error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points for likely voters.
–CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report
Get the latest poll results here.