Poll: Stabenow leads Kid Rock in race for Michigan Senate seat
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Sen. Debbie StabenowDeborah (Debbie) Ann StabenowConservatives offer stark warning to Trump, GOP on background checks USDA cuts payments promised to researchers as agency uproots to Kansas City USDA eases relocation timeline as researchers flee agency MORE (D-Mich.) leads possible opponent and rock star Kid Rock in a poll released Tuesday on the possible Senate matchup in 2018.

A Target-Insyght poll first reported by the Detroit News shows Stabenow enjoying the support of a comfortable 50 percent of voters compared to just 42 who say they would vote for Rock.

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Kid Rock, whose real name is Robert Ritchie, has not officially announced a run but has been flirting with a bid for months. Last month, he tweeted that a campaign website, kidrockforsenate.com, was real.

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“I have had a ton of emails and texts asking me if this website is real… http://kidrockforsenate.com The answer is an absolute YES,” Ritchie tweeted last month.

He added in a second tweet, “Stay tuned, I will have a major announcement in the near future — Kid Rock.”

Pollster Ed Sarpolus, who conducted the poll for Target-Insyght, said that the results show that Michigan remains firmly in Trump country.

“Michigan is still a Trump state,” Sarpolus said. “It’s still a very close state, but any candidate on the Democratic side is going to have to face the impact of Donald Trump’s people out there. Will they show up and vote Republican?”

Sarpolus warned that despite Stabenow's lead in poll, she should view Ritchie as a serious contender.

“She’ll take this seriously, she’ll raise the money and she’s a fighter,” Sarpolus predicted. “Would I be scared if I was Debbie? Yes, for the fact it means she’s going to have to work harder than expected."

Stabenow's campaign has already reacted to Ritchie's tweets and polls showing a close matchup between the two. In July, Stabenow's office responded to the news with a fundraising pitch warning that in the era of Trump, anything is possible.

“This afternoon, Kid Rock tweeted out that he was going to have a big announcement and hinted that he was going to challenge me for the U.S. Senate,” a July email from Stabenow’s campaign read.

“We don’t know if this is real or just a publicity stunt,” the fundraising pitch to supporters continued. “But after Donald Trump’s surprising win last year, we need to act fast.”

The Target-Insyght survey was conducted on July 25 and 28, and contacted 822 likely Michigan voters. It carries a margin of error of +/- 3.5 percentage points. 

Stabenow easily won reelection in 2012, taking nearly 60 percent of the vote.