GOP Poll: Cotton Holds Lead Over Pryor in Arkansas

Image: GOP Poll: Cotton Holds Lead Over Pryor in Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor, left, and Rep. Tom Cotton.

Wednesday, 23 Oct 2013 07:14 PM

By Cathy Burke

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A poll conducted for Arkansas Rep. Tom Cotton's campaign found him with a 4-point lead over Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor in a race considered one of the GOP's prime chances to grab a U.S. Senate seat in 2014, Roll Call reported Wednesday.

Cotton, a Republican, led incumbent Pryor 45 percent to 41 percent, with 15 percent of those surveyed undecided, the survey conducted by OnMessage Inc. showed.

The survey by the GOP firm was taken Oct. 15-17, with a margin of error of 4 points.

"One year from the election, Sen. Pryor finds himself in very vulnerable territory," pollster Wes Anderson said, noting the Democrat was "mired in the low 40s, trailing his GOP challenger by 4 points."

"That all adds up to make Arkansas one of the best places in the country for a GOP Senate pickup," he said.

Anderson argued in the polling memo that Pryor is vulnerable because he supports President Barack Obama and his administration's signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare.

Six in 10 Arkansas voters hold an unfavorable opinion of the president, the OnMessage poll found, and 53 percent of those polled said they were "strongly" opposed to Obamacare.

Meanwhile, the Pryor campaign launched a new TV ad hanging the government shutdown on Cotton.

"It's clear that Rep. Tom Cotton's agenda is too reckless for Arkansas," the accompanying text says on Pryor's campaign website.

The OnMessage poll shows Cotton's numbers up slightly from an internal poll conducted for the National Republican Senatorial Committee in Arkansas in August, which showed Cotton ahead of Pryor by 2 percentage points.


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