Mitch McConnell’s hold on his Senate seat is looking more tenuous every day with 10 recent polls showing him as tied or lagging slightly behind Democratic challenger Alison Lundergan Grimes.
Politicians like to tout the polls when they are favorable and when the poll shows them to be running behind their favorite line is “the only poll that counts is the one in November,” however in this case, it is hard to believe that 10 polls are all wrong.
In a Rasmussen poll conducted between January 29-30 Mitch is statistically tied with Grimes at 42%-42%, not the position an incumbent wants to find himself in.
Even more telling is the fact that this comes at the end of a week when the McConnell campaign spent $300,000 on air time to promote the Senator in his home state of Kentucky. In the same time the Grimes campaign spent nothing on air time. When you are the incumbent and outspending the competition and they are still keeping up it is not a good sign.
Another survey by Public Policy Polling (PPP) produced nearly identical results, showing the spread between the two to be another statistical tie at 43%-42% in McConnell’s favor.
The PPP poll found that McConnell’s job approval was at an abysmal 31% with voters in general and only marginally better with Republicans at 47/41. Among independents, possibly the most important demographic in a tight race, he has almost no support with only 22% having a favorable opinion while 66% disapprove. Not surprisingly only 19% of Democrats approve of him while 75% disapprove.
If there is one bright spot for Mitch in these latest polls it is that he appears to be relatively safe from primary Tea Party challenger Matt Bevin. It seems that most voters do not even know who he is and among those who do most have an unfavorable opinion of him. The PPP poll shows McConnell with a 53-26 edge against Bevin in the primary.
In the unlikely event that Bevin does somehow manage to get the Republican nomination the polls show that Grimes is in virtually the same statistical tie with him for the general election.
It does not come as a shocking revelation that the polls also found that McConnell’s greatest support comes from conservative white men over the age of 45.
With the progressive super PAC, Progress Kentucky seeking to ally itself with Tea party groups across the state in an effort to field a viable primary challenge to the Senator and his dismal polling numbers it looks as if McConnell might want to start thinking about what he is going to do after he leaves the Senate. It may be less than a year into his future.