Updated 10/04/2012 07:30 PM
Governor's race shows clear leader one month out
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RALEIGH — One day after the first statewide television debate in this year's governor's race, Democrat Walter Dalton was back on the campaign trail.
He was talking education, but other people are talking about his chances at being the state's next top executive.
“It would take, let's say a minor miracle to potentially pull that off. Stranger things have happened over the years in politics, but boy the odds makers in Vegas have got to be thinking this is a very long bet,” said Micahel Bitzer with Catawba College.
Almost any way you look at it, the deck is stacked against Dalton at this point. The polls, the fundraising, and a debate that had no huge gaffes.
Dalton, for his part, said a month is a month and he is not throwing in the towel.
“I think I do, it has been done before. Its been done several times. Ten, 11 points at this point in time has reversed itself,” said Dalton.
As expected, the McCrory campaign is lining up with those that believe the outcome of this race is become more clear. His campaign's press secretary, Ricky Diaz said in a statement:
In last night's debate, North Carolinians saw a desperate lieutenant governor that is willing to say or do anything to get elected. The reason he is badly trailing in the polls is because the lieutenant governor is running an uninspiring campaign based on attacks and division
Political observers say with Dalton's political experience, the deficit isn't insurmountable, but is also unlikely.
“Four weeks is a lot of time. But given the polls and they have changed much over time, again I think Dalton has a large obstacle to overcome,” said Ken Fernandez with Elon University.
Dalton says tough odds or not, he believes this race is not over yet.
“I have been running the high hurdles ever since I got into this race. But I am running hard, I am jumping every one of them and we are going to hit the finish line ahead of this thing,” said Dalton.
McCrory and Dalton will face off for a second statewide debate on Tuesday, Oct. 16.