The poll of 400 likely voters by San Francisco-based Tulchin Research was conducted Sept. 29 to Oct. 1 after Hunter suggested Campa-Najjar is part of an effort by radical Muslims to infiltrate the U.S. government.
Campa-Najjar, a former Obama administration official, was raised in East County and is Christian. A paternal grandfather he never knew was Palestinian terrorist.
The new poll, which was released Thursday, showed Hunter with 45.1 percent of the likely vote to Campa-Najjar’s 44.4 percent.
“Our polling finds Republican Duncan Hunter in a statistical dead heat with his Democratic challenger,” Tulchin Research said in its report, noting “Hunter’s indictment for fraudulently spending $250,000 in campaign funds on personal expenses and his conduct since the indictment have taken a significant toll on his standing with his constituents.”
The pollsters said that among those voters who have heard about the indictment, more than two-thirds say it has made them feel “less favorable” toward Hunter.
Hunter and his father before him have represented the largely rural district in Congress for nearly four decades.