The second poll in two weeks from a national media outlet shows a tie race in Missouri’s U.S. Senate race. The CBS News 2018 Battleground Tracker survey conducted by YouGov shows Democratic incumbent Claire Mccaskill and Republican challenger Josh Hawley tied at 45% each. An NBC Marist poll released the first week of September had the two candidates tied at 47%.
In the CBS poll, two-thirds of Hawley’s backers say their vote is at least partially to support the president, and two-thirds of McCaskill’s say it is to oppose him. More of Hawley’s voters are backing him primarily because he is a Republican than are McCaskill’s voters backing her because she is a Democrat.
The CBS survey reveals that supporters of McCaskill are more likely to pick her on personal character or her stance on issues, which an analyst says might explain her competitiveness in a state Republican presidential candidates typically win easily.
The survey gives McCaskill the edge in handling health care while Hawley gets the nod for immigration, crime and gun policy.
The poll examines support for healthcare, showing mostly strong disapproval for Obamacare, but even stronger concern that everyone is covered, and still more support for keeping costs down, improving health care quality and covering preexisting conditions.
McCaskill has made coverage of preexisting conditions a cornerstone of her campaign and has harshly criticized Hawley, the state’s attorney general, for joining a lawsuit led by Texas to overturn the Affordable Care Act.
Doing away with the health care law would also scrap the provision to cover preexisting conditions, although Hawley says he would seek to keep the coverage intact.
Hawley has tried to gain the upper hand by pressuring McCaskill to support President Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court, Brett Kavanaugh. Since sexual assault accusations against Kavanaugh by California college professor Christine Blasey Ford have gained steam in recent days, Hawley has blamed Democrats for playing politics.
In a Monday statement, he said California Democratic U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein “waited until the last hour to bring this 30-year old allegation to light.” Ford’s allegations center on an incident she says took place in high school.
“The Democrats have played politics with this entire process and were opposed to Brett Kavanaugh before he was even nominated. They don’t care about the truth,” Hawley said. “I believe allegations of sexual misconduct should never be disregarded. That’s why it’s important that both Dr. Ford and Judge Kavanaugh be heard immediately and under oath.”
The CBS poll shows the largest share of voters, 29%, describe themselves as moderate followed by 24% who think of themselves as somewhat conservative. About 18% call themselves very conservative while 13% refer to themselves as somewhat liberal and 11% say they’re very liberal.
The poll of 1104 registered voters has a margin of error of 3.3%.