AZ Poll: Democrat Challenger Mark Kelly Overtakes Martha McSally

Retired NASA Astronaut Mark Kelly speaks about his time in space during an event at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, September 14, 2015.AFP PHOTO / SAUL LOEB (Photo credit should read SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)
SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

Sen. Martha McSally (R-AZ) is falling behind Democrat challenger Mark Kelly, according to an OH Predictive Insights poll released this week.

Kelly– who is vying for McSally’s seat – has been unable to lead her in the polls, until now. The OH Predictive Insights poll – which surveyed 600 likely Arizona voters between August 13–14 – shows the retired astronaut leading the incumbent 46 percent to 41 percent, a sign McSally’s support is slowly dropping. McSally led Kelly by just two points in February and by one point in May, according to the Hill. The margin of error is +/- 4 percent.

The Hill reports:

McSally has fallen behind, the poll suggests, as President Trump’s standing takes a hit in Arizona. Just 47 percent of likely voters in the state approve of Trump’s job performance, down from 50 percent in May and 54 percent in October. His disapproval rating has risen from 46 percent last October to 52 percent today.

“Trump has seen a steady downward decline in his job approval,” said Mike Noble, a Republican pollster and the managing partner and chief of research at OH Predictive Insights.

“We are still in August 2019 and the Arizona Senate race is already exciting — expect the numbers to start moving when these two fundraising juggernauts start spending heavy and hard,” Noble added in a press release.

Thirteen percent of voters were undecided, according to the survey.

McSally lost the battle for former Sen. Jeff Flake’s (R-AZ) seat to Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) last year by less than three percentage points, garnering 47.6 percent to Sinema’s 50 percent.

Gov. Doug Ducey (R) appointed McSally to take over for Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ), who filled late-Sen. John McCain’s (R-AZ) seat following his death.

“With her experience and long record of service, Martha is uniquely qualified to step up and fight for Arizona’s interests in the U.S. Senate,” Ducey said in a statement at the time.

McSally has been struggling to gain significant support, particularly in Maricopa County, where the majority of Arizona voters reside. She is behind Kelly by five points in that county alone and lost to Sinema in that same county in 2018 by 60,256 votes.

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