Kentucky: Independent Poll Gives Senate Democrats Hope

Posted October 29, 2007 at 6:24pm

So much for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) being politically invincible.

While a new independent poll showed McConnell leading four possible Democratic challengers as he bids for a fifth term, the leads were not overwhelming and showed two potential Democratic candidates, Rep. Ben Chandler and state Auditor Crit Luallen, with particular potential.

In the Research 2000 poll of 600 likely voters, conducted Oct. 22-24 for the Lexington Herald-Leader and Action News 36, McConnell led Chandler 46 percent to 41 percent and Luallen 45 percent to 40 percent. He topped state Attorney General Greg Stumbo (D) 46 percent to 37 percent, and Iraq War veteran and 2006 Congressional candidate Andrew Horne (D) 45 percent to 34 percent.

The poll had an error margin of 4 points.

While no Democrat has filed against McConnell yet, the Senate race is expected to get the full attention of Bluegrass State Democrats after next Tuesday’s elections for state offices. Former Lt. Gov. Steve Beshear (D) is favored to oust Gov. Ernie Fletcher (R), and Democrats are hoping some of the momentum from his victory will help them topple McConnell.

— Josh Kurtz