In Tennessee race for Senate, Democrat Bredesen holds lead

April 11, 2018

Tennessee is the latest red state poised to go blue in the 2018 midterm elections. In what is shaping up as a race between Former Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen (D) and U.S. Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-7th District) for the seat currently held by U.S. Senator Bob Corker (R), the former is leading by ten points, based on findings of new poll conducted by Middle Tennessee State University. 

The poll, released on April 5, found that 45% of 600 registered Tennessee voters said they would choose Bredesen, if the election were held now.

Blackburn netted 35% of the straw poll, with another 17% of respondents saying they were not sure Three percent of respondents declined to answer.

Interestingly enough, the poll determined that Bredesen is attracting substantial support among Independents and even among Republicans: Forty-five percent of self-described Independents said they would vote for Bredesen; while only 33% of such voters said they would vote for Blackburn, the poll found.

On the other side of the aisle, 20% of Republican respondents said they would vote for Bredesen; but only 5% of Democrats said they would vote for Blackburn.

The political makeup of the poll’s respondents comprised 34% Republicans, 25% Democrats and 28% Independents.

The MTSU poll is the latest to indicate that Bredesen would beat Blackburn in a head-to-head matchup. Last month, a poll from a Democratic-leaning firm showed Bredesen held a 5% lead over Blackburn.

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.

The primary will be held on August 2.

Research contact: Ken.Blake@mtsu.edu

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