Sen. Mark Pryor is trailing Rep. Tom Cotton by seven points among Arkansas voters in the race for the U.S. Senate, a poll finds.
According to the poll conducted by Republican pollster Kellyanne Conway at the polling company Inc./WomenTrend, which was commissioned by the Citizens United Political Victory Fund, the one-term congressman leads the two-term senator 48 percent to 41 percent among 400 likely Arkansas voters surveyed Dec. 6-7, Politico reported
"Sen. Mark Pryor enters 2014 as one of the most vulnerable incumbents in the nation," Conway said. "The Arkansas Democrat has a favorability rating well below 50 percent and an opponent more popular than he."
Pryor's favorability rating is at 44 percent. However, only 33 percent of independents have a favorable view of the sitting senator, compared with 52 percent who don't.
In her report to Citizens United, Conway cited President Barack Obama and Obamacare as also having "very unfavorable" ratings in the Natural State, which will make Pryor's path to victory "much more difficult."
Sixty-one percent of Arkansas voters have a negative view of the president, and 56 percent say they have a "very unfavorable" view of the new healthcare law.
"Mark Pryor is synonymous with Obamacare, and Obamacare is synonymous with making life worse for the American people," David N. Bossie, president of Citizens United, told Politico. "That's why Pryor is losing to Cotton in the Arkansas Senate race."
Cotton led in an October poll by four points
, but this is the biggest lead he has seen so far.
The Arkansas Republican is not as well known as Pryor in the Natural State, but he has a favorability rating of 39 percent to 26 percent. Forty-four percent of independents have a positive view of the freshman congressman, while 27 percent view him unfavorably.
Cotton has a strong lead among independent voters at 52 percent to 31 percent.
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