Kilpatrick trails primary challenger in poll

Rep. Carolyn Kilpatrick (D-Mich.), the mother of a disgraced former Detroit mayor, finds herself trailing her primary opponent, according to a new poll Monday.

Kilpatrick, the seven-term lawmaker from Detroit, trails state Sen. Hansen Clarke 38 percent to 30 in a primary battle for Michigan's 13th congressional district.

If the Democratic primary were held today, 38.1 percent of the district's voters would choose Clarke and 30 percent would vote for Kilpatrick, while another 20.3 percent were undecided, according to a new Detroit News/WDIV poll.

The poll shows struggles for a second straight cycle for Kilpatrick, the mother of former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick (D), who resigned two years ago and was convicted and jailed on corruption charges.

The former Congressional Black Caucus chairwoman was almost unseated in a 2008 primary challenge as well, when critics made her passionate defense of her son a key issue in the contest. She held off former state Rep. Mary Water and state Sen. Martha Scott in a divided primary field, but fell well short of winning a majority of the primary field.

Though a number of other candidates have entered 2010's contest to unseat Kilpatrick, they drew only a combined 9.5 percent in support from voters in the Detroit district.

The primary election will be held Aug. 3. The poll, conducted by Glengariff Group from July 14-15, has a 4.9 percent margin of error.