Politics Poll: Phil Bredesen holds double-digit lead over Marsha Blackburn in U.S. Senate race

12:21  06 april  2018
12:21  06 april  2018 Source:   usatoday.com

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New Poll Gives Phil Bredesen Double - Digit Lead Over Marsha Blackburn in Tennessee Senate Race . Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) may be closer than previously thought, with Democratic candidate Phil Bredesen holding an early lead .

Phil Bredesen has a 10-point lead over U . S . Rep. Marsha Blackburn in the race to succeed U . S . Sen. Bob Corker, according to a new poll from Middle Tennessee State University.

Phil Bredesen sitting in front of a window: U.S. Senate candidate and former Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen serves chili to supporters during a campaign event at ACME Feed & Seed on Saturday, March 3, 2018.© Shelley Mays/The Tennessean U.S. Senate candidate and former Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen serves chili to supporters during a campaign event at ACME Feed & Seed on Saturday, March 3, 2018. NASHVILLE — Former Gov. Phil Bredesen has a 10-point lead over U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn in the race to succeed U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, according to a new poll from Middle Tennessee State University.

The poll, released Thursday, found 45 percent of 600 registered Tennessee voters said they would choose Bredesen, a Democrat and former Nashville mayor, if the election were immediately held.

Blackburn, a Brentwood Republican, netted 35 percent, with another 17 percent of respondents saying they were not sure. Three percent of respondents declined to answer.

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Phil Bredesen has a 10-point lead over U . S . Rep. Marsha Blackburn in the race to succeed U . S . Sen. Bob Corker, according to a new poll from Middle Tennessee State University.

Phil Bredesen has a 10-point lead over U . S . Rep. Marsha Blackburn in the race to succeed U . S . Sen. Bob Corker, according to a new poll from Middle Tennessee State University.

The latest poll is the first survey released this year to suggest Bredesen has a double-digit lead over Blackburn.

The MTSU poll also found Bredesen had a considerable advantage over Blackburn in terms of support from voters on the other side of the aisle.

Forty-five percent of self-described independents said they would vote for Bredesen while only 33 percent of such voters said they would vote for Blackburn, the poll found.

Twenty percent of Republican respondents said they would vote for Bredesen while 5 percent of Democrats said they would vote for Blackburn.

The political makeup of the poll's respondents included 34 percent Republicans, 25 percent Democrats and 28 percent independents. Another 8 percent said "something else."

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Phil Bredesen holds a 10-percentage-point lead over Republican U . S . Rep. Marsha Blackburn among state voters in a head-to-head contest for the seat being vacated by retiring U . S . Sen. Bob Corker, according to the latest MTSU Poll .

New poll finds Bredesen with narrow lead over Blackburn in US Senate race . Forty-six percent of the survey’ s respondents said they would vote for Democrat Phil Bredesen compared to 41 percent for Republican Marsha Blackburn if the election were immediately held .

In an interview, Ken Blake, director of the MTSU poll, said Bredesen's support among Republicans is hardly shocking given his popularity within the party while governor from 2003 to 2011.

"I think some of that goodwill or social capital that he built up as governor may be paying dividends for him now," Blake said.

On the other hand, Blake said Blackburn is trying to appeal to more "core conservatives."

Marsha Blackburn et al. posing for the camera: U.S. Senate candidate Marsha Blackburn sings the national anthem at the Williamson County Republican Party annual Reagan Day Dinner Friday, Feb. 23, 2018 in Franklin, Tenn.© George Walker IV / The Tennessean U.S. Senate candidate Marsha Blackburn sings the national anthem at the Williamson County Republican Party annual Reagan Day Dinner Friday, Feb. 23, 2018 in Franklin, Tenn.

"If she ends up having to kind of attract some moderate Democrats or Republican-leaning independents, it could be a challenge," Blake said.

The MTSU poll is the latest survey indicating Bredesen would beat Blackburn in a head-to-head matchup. Last month, a poll from a Democratic-leaning firm showed Bredesen had a 5 percent lead over Blackburn.

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Marsha Blackburn (R-TN-07) leads former Gov. Phil Bredesen , a Democrat, in a head-to-head general election matchup for the Tennessee U . S . Senate seat currently held by Sen.

Marsha Blackburn held a commanding lead in the Aug. 2 Republican primary for Senate in Tennessee, according to a new poll commissioned for the Club for Growth. Democrats are hoping that former Gov. Phil Bredesen can threaten Republicans in the general election.

But other polls have shown Blackburn would beat Bredesen.

With so many respondents still undecided on the race, Blake surmised that many Tennesseans are distracted by the consistent flow of news and developments out of Washington, D.C.

The MTSU poll did not include questions about other Republican candidates seeking the nomination for U.S. Senate, or favorability and name recognition for Blackburn and Bredesen.

In MTSU's last poll, conducted in October, respondents weighed in on the favorability of Blackburn and Bredesen, and others.

Also seeking the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate are Williamson County businessman Darrell Lynn, former Memphis Grizzlies ophthalmologist Rolando Toyos and perennial candidate Larry Crim.

In a statement, Blackburn's campaign spokesman Abbi Sigler said Bredesen was trying to convince voters he's a moderate but he's more in line with Democrats like U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer and former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

"Tennesseans know Marsha Blackburn is the only candidate who will represent their conservative values in the United States Senate," Sigler said.

A spokesperson for Bredesen's campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

More: Phil Bredesen would be one of the richest members of Congress if elected to Senate

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Follow Joel Ebert on Twitter: @joelebert29

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