Dem poll shows GOP Rep. Steve Stivers potentially vulnerable

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Partisan polls should always be taken with a grain of salt, and there have been few other signs so far that Stivers could lose this year. The freshman Republican's district was greatly redrawn in a GOP gerrymander of the state, turning it from a district where President Obama won 54 percent in 2008 to one where he would have only won 46 percent. 

But that change also means that Stivers is running in a district that is half new to him. Because it got more conservative, Stivers's pro-abortion rights views mean he is at odds with some of the district's newly-added Republicans on cultural issues.

That may explain why voters chose "someone new" over Stivers in the poll by 41 percent to 38 percent even while the poll shows he still holds a double-digit lead over Lang.

Stivers has proven to be a strong campaigner. He nearly won the seat in 2008 even though Obama carried the district comfortably. He blew out then-Rep. Mary Jo Kilroy (D-Ohio) in 2010.

Stivers also has a huge cash advantage over Lang. The district sprawls over a number of counties stretching outwards from suburban Columbus, making it a hard district to run in. That explains the poll's caveat that Stivers could be in trouble "if Pat Lang has the resources to run a competitive campaign."

The Hill rates the race "solid Republican."

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