A majority of Kentucky Republicans — totaling 56 percent— and a third of all state residents, would like to see Sen. Rand Paul run for president in 2016, McClatchy reported.
Among Republicans, 33 percent of those surveyed say he should run for president; 23 percent say he should run for both president and re-election as senator; and 24 percent say he should focus exclusively on the Senate, according to the Herald-Leader/WKYT Bluegrass Poll.
Rand is up for re-election in 2016 and current state law does not allow a candidate's name to appear twice on the ballot. Analysts say Republican lawmakers could change or challenge the statute to accommodate Paul. He has made clear his intention to seek a second senatorial term.
Overall, 46 percent of voters approve of Rand's performance as the state's junior senator, compared to 45 percent disapproving. Among those who identify as moderates, 48 percent disapprove.
Paul polls better with conservative Republicans than moderate ones.
Thirty-six percent of conservatives say he should run for president; 27 percent want him to focus on getting re-elected; and another 27 percent favor a run for both offices.
Among moderate Republicans, 29 percent think Paul should make a run for the White House; 20 percent think he should run only for his Senate seat; and 21 percent say he should run for both. But 26 percent of moderate Republicans don't want him to seek any office, according to the poll.
Paul's strongest demographic in the state are voters age 50 to 64. His approval rating among millennials is 41 percent. Thirty-nine percent of millennials want Paul to run for president; 23 percent think he should stick with the Senate; and 20 percent want him to seek both.
Rand, who is doing outreach to African Americans on behalf of the GOP, has a 29 percent approval rating from blacks. His approval rating among white voters is 47 percent, McClatchy reported.
The automated telephone poll interviewed 1,082 Kentucky voters, among them 404 Republicans. The overall margin of error is about 3 percentage points and 5 points among Republicans.
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