A new Rasmussen Poll shows Rand Paul with an 8-point lead over State Attorney General Jack Conway. That’s a 17-point drop for Paul since the day after the May Primary, when he held a 25-point advantage.
The poll was conducted on June 1st and surveyed 500 likely voters in Kentucky. The margin of error is +/- 4.5 percentage points.
Here are the latest numbers.
Election 2010: Kentucky Senate
Rand Paul (R) 49%
Jack Conway (D) 41%
Some Other Candidate 4%
Not Sure 6%
Rasmussen writes: “Almost all candidates receive a bounce following a big victory and Paul clearly lost his post-primary bounce. But he added to the decline by quickly stumbling out of the gate in an interview on MSNBC. During the interview, he discussed reasons for opposing the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and was immediately hit with charges of racism. Seventy-three percent (73%) of Kentucky voters say they have followed news reports about his comments on MSNBC, including 39% who have followed Very Closely.
Fifty-seven percent (57%) of Kentucky voters now have a favorable opinion of Paul, down from 69% percent in the previous survey. Thirty-eight percent (38%) view him unfavorably, and five percent (5%) have no opinion.”
Here is the complete report from Rasmussen
Just after his big Republican Primary win last month, Rand Paul led his Democratic opponent Jack Conway by 25 points in Kentucky’s U.S. Senate race. Now Paul’s lead is down to just eight points.
Now, however, Paul holds a much smaller advantage. The latest Rasmussen Reports statewide telephone survey finds the GOP nominee with support from 49% of the state’s voters while Conway earns 41% of the vote. Four percent (4%) prefer some other candidate, and six percent (6%) are undecided.
Almost all candidates receive a bounce following a big victory and Paul clearly lost his post-primary bounce. But he added to the decline by quickly stumbling out of the gate in an interview on MSNBC. During the interview, he discussed reasons for opposing the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and was immediately hit with charges of racism. Seventy-three percent (73%) of Kentucky voters say they have followed news reports about his comments on MSNBC, including 39% who have followed Very Closely.
Fifty-seven percent (57%) of Kentucky voters now have a favorable opinion of Paul, down from 69% percent in the previous survey. Thirty-eight percent (38%) view him unfavorably, and five percent (5%) have no opinion.
Conway is viewed favorably by 47% and unfavorably by 43%, marking virtually no change from two weeks ago.
Eleven percent (11%) have no opinion of the Democrat.
Forty-five percent (45%) say the comments on MSNBC are at least somewhat important to how they will vote in November, with 25% who say they are Very Important. But slightly more voters (47%) say the comments are not very or not at all important in determining how they will vote.
Interestingly, most of those who have followed the story Very Closely support Paul, suggesting they don’t consider it that big a deal. But 76% of those who consider the comments Very Important to how they will vote now favor Conway.
Politically speaking, 39% of Democrats describe the comments as Very Important to how they will vote, a view shared by just 13% of Republicans and 17% of voters not affiliated with either major party.
This statewide telephone survey of 500 Likely Voters in Kentucky was conducted on June 1, 2010 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/-4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
Paul leads among male voters by more than 20 points, while Conway holds a modest lead among female voters. Unaffiliated voters prefer Paul by a 52% to 35% margin.
Sixty percent (60%) of Kentucky voters favor repeal of the national health care bill, while 32% oppose repeal. This is comparable to views nationally and includes 50% who Strongly Favor repeal and 22% who Strongly Oppose it.
Paul earns 75% of the vote from the larger group that Strongly Favors repeal. Eighty-four percent (84%) of those who Strongly Oppose repeal support Conway.
Just 22% of voters in the state believe the U.S. Department of Justice should challenge Arizona’s new immigration law in federal court as the Obama administration is reportedly considering. Sixty-one percent (61%) are against such a challenge. Seventy-eight percent (78%) say U.S. troops should be sent to the Mexican border to help stop illegal immigration.
Paul’s primary victory was credited in large part to support from so-called Tea Party voters. Thirty-one percent (31%) of voters in Kentucky consider themselves part of the Tea Party movement. That's double the national average. Fifty-three percent (53%) in the state say the movement is good for America, but 24% disagree.
John McCain carried Kentucky over Obama in the November 2008 elections by a 58% to 41% spread. Only 37% of Kentucky voters now approve of the job Obama is doing as president, while 63% disapprove. This is considerably lower than the approval ratings he earns nationally in the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll.
Rasmussen Reports has recently surveyed Senate races in Arizona, Alabama, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin.
Rasmussen Reports is an electronic publishing firm specializing in the collection, publication, and distribution of public opinion polling information.
The Rasmussen Reports Election Edge™ Premium Service offers the most comprehensive public opinion coverage available anywhere.
Scott Rasmussen, president of Rasmussen Reports, has been an independent pollster for more than a decade.
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