Kentucky Senate: Rand Paul 53% Jack Conway 40%
If the latest numbers from Public Policy Polling are correct, it looks like Rand Paul may be almost done closing the deal in Kentucky:
Independents have moved toward Rand Paul in droves over the last month and a half and as a result he’s built his lead in the Kentucky Senate race up to 13 points at 53-40.
In a September PPP poll Paul led by 7 overall while also holding a 7 point lead with independents. Now that advantage with independents is a whooping 39 points at 66-27. There’s been virtually no movement among Democrats or Republicans over that period of time so most of the movement in the race can be attributed to that shift.
There’s been no change in Rand Paul’s favorability numbers in the wake of the controversial ‘Aqua Buddha’ ad. He’s at a net +6 (49/43), virtually identical to his +5 (45/40) a month ago. Jack Conway has seen his numbers plunge though. Where before voters split evenly in their assessments of him, giving him a favorability of 36/36, they now view him mostly in a negative light at -13 (39/52).
There’s little doubt the ad has backfired. 56% of voters say they think it was inappropriate to only 15% who think it was alright. Even Democrats feel by a 41/24 spread that it crossed the line and perhaps relating back to Conway’s huge new deficit with independents they think it was wrong by a 68/7 spread.
Of course, considering that Barack Obama has a 34% approval rating in the state, it was going to be an uphill battle for any Democrat in Kentucky this year.
Absent something truly unexpected when it comes to turnout, this one seems to be in the GOP column. Get ready for Senator Rand Paul.
(For those so inclined, full poll results are here)