Scott Brown Would Virtually Tie Joseph Kennedy II, Lead Others In Massachusetts Governor Race: Poll

Former Sen. Scott Brown (R-Mass.) and former Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy II (D-Mass.) would nearly tie in the 2014 Massachusetts governor's race, according to polling released Tuesday.

An online University of Massachusetts Amherst/YouGov poll found that Brown would barely edge out Kennedy, 42 percent to 41 percent. Brown carried wider leads over two other Democrats, state treasurer Steve Grossman (55 percent to 26 percent) and Rep. Mike Capuano (45 percent to 33 percent).

The poll also included matchups with two other Republicans: former state Sen. Richard Tisei and 2010 gubernatorial candidate Charlie Baker. Kennedy led Tisei by 40 percent to 33 percent, and Baker by 48 percent to 25 percent.

Neither Brown nor Kennedy has announced a run for governor, while Tisei, Baker, Capuano and Grossman have said publicly they're considering a run.

As Boston Magazine's David Bernstein notes, a main takeaway from the poll is that besides Brown and Kennedy, the potential candidates are not well-known in the state. In the matchup between Grossman and Baker, only 53 percent of Massachusetts voters were able to choose a favorite, while the remainder said they weren't sure.

“The worst news in this poll is probably for Charlie Baker,” Brian Schaffner, director of the poll, said in the survey's release. “Despite the fact that he should have fairly high name recognition from his run for governor in 2010, his support doesn’t break 26 percent in any of the potential match-ups.”

The UMass poll surveyed 500 registered Massachusetts voters online between May 30 and June 4.