A helpful addition to the data on the question of whether two-time gubernatorial loser Dino Rossi is really a threat to three-term incumbent Senator Patty Murray. (And an answer to a related question: Might three-term Republican Congressman Dave Reichert have a better shot at the seat?)

On the basis of the Rasmussen-driven narrative that Murray might be in danger if Rossi was to get into the race (as CQ Politics speculates, based on his meeting with NRSC chair Cornyn yesterday), we decided to have R2K poll the race. What R2K found? Patty Murray is the most popular Democrat in the state, with (contra Rasmussen) a 52 percent approval, and a 51 percent approval among all-important Independents. Only Obama is more popular with Washingtonians.

What's more, she handily beats the leading conventional-wisdom contenders Rossi and Rep. Dave Reichert (WA-08).

Research 2000 for Daily Kos. 3/22-24. Likely voters. MoE 4%.

Patty Murray (D) 52
Dino Rossi (R) 41

Patty Murray (D) 51
Dave Reichert (R) 43