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New polling shows that California Senator Dianne Feinstein is vulnerable to a challenge from the right, and now we might actually see someone step up and do it.

Run, Michael, Run!

"...Two years ago, two major Republican campaigns swarmed the California GOP fall convention, confident that they could drum up the support to beat three-term incumbent Democrat Sen. Barbara Boxer, who was considered vulnerable because of her low voter-approval ratings.

This year, as 1,000 GOP activists gather today in Los Angeles for their fall convention, things are different, as even the California Republican Party chairman has no idea who will take on 19-year-incumbent Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein next year - and no major candidates have stepped up.

But the landscape may change soon, analysts said, given Feinstein's recent campaign money problems and a Field Poll released today that gives one of California's most consistently popular politicians a 41 percent approval rating, the lowest of her Senate career.

One person considering a run, The Chronicle has learned, is Michael Reagan, a former conservative talk-radio host and the son of former President Ronald Reagan.

Republicans may consider a challenge to Feinstein less foreboding after the survey of 1,001 registered voters found that 39 percent disapprove of Feinstein's performance and 20 percent have no opinion.

For the first time since being elected to the Senate in 1992, a plurality - 44 percent - of Field Poll respondents were "not inclined" to vote for her while 41 percent were. The margin of error for the survey is plus or minus 3.2 percentage points.

At the same point before each of her three previous re-election bids, at least 52 percent of Field Poll respondents were inclined to support her.