As the campaign enters the final stretch, Democrat Robin Carnahan
appears to be closing the gap between her and Republican Roy Blunt
in the race to fill the seat of GOP Sen. Kit Bond, according to a Public Policy Polling survey
conducted Oct. 17-18.
Since mid-August, various polls had shown
Blunt, a seven-term congressman, with leads between 7 and 13 points. PPP's early August poll had Blunt ahead by 45 percent to 38 percent.
Now, PPP's latest survey has Blunt leading Carnahan, Ohio's Secretary of State, by 46 percent to 41 percent with 10 percent for other candidates and 7 percent undecided. The margin of error is 3.9 points.
Both candidates command about the same level of support from members of their own parties, but Blunt leads among independents (29 percent of the sample) by 46 percent to 31 percent with the remainder undecided or opting for other candidates.
Part of the reason for Carnahan picking up some ground is that Blunt had been attracting 11 percent of the Democratic vote in August, which is now down to 8 percent. Carnahan has nudged up the number of her Republican supporters from 4 percent in August to 6 percent.
Both candidates are in negative territory on the favorability scale, but Carnahan more so than Blunt. Blunt is viewed unfavorably by 45 percent and favorably by 42 percent, with 13 percent undecided. Fifty-three percent see Carnahan unfavorably while 39 percent regard her favorably, with 8 percent undecided.
"These numbers show that some folks have been too quick to write off Missouri Senate as a competitive race," said PPP's Tom Jensen."Roy Blunt's lead is within the margin of error and the numbers are trending in Robin Carnahan's direction. If Democratic interest continues to tick up as election day moves closer there could be a surprising result on November 2nd."
Follow Poll Watch on Twitter
Visit the Poll Watch Home Page and see all the latest polls in one place
Read Politics Daily's 2010 Elections Round-Up