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Senate Poll Shows Tighter Than Expected Race

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A new state poll shows Republican Arizona Senator John McCain could be in for a tight race to keep his seat in the U.S. Senate. As Arizona Public Radio’s Aaron Granillo reports, next year’s election may be closer than expected.

A five-term incumbent, McCain says he still has more work to do in the Senate. But, the latest Rocky Mountain Poll finds he has a slim lead over his likely democratic challenger. The numbers show Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick trails by just 6 percentage points, with 31 percent of the vote. Earl de Berge is the poll’s research director. He says the results are surprising.

“And I think it may be part of the anti-beltway syndrome now that very well-known, quote-unquote, ‘establishment candidates,’ who are identified as being part of the problem in Congress rather than part of the solution,” says de Berg.

De Berge says younger voters could play a big role in the Senate race, since nearly 50 percent haven’t decided who to support. Meanwhile, next year’s GOP primary election could also be tighter than anticipated, as the same poll shows 47 percent of Republicans remain undecided. 

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