Poll: Runoff likely in Mississippi Senate special election

Poll: Runoff likely in Mississippi Senate special election

The special election for Mississippi's senate is looking increasingly likely to head to a runoff, according to a new poll.

None of the four candidates in the “jungle primary” have enough support to reach to the 50 percent threshold and avoid a runoff, an NBC News/Marist poll released Tuesday finds.


Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R), who was appointed when Republican Thad CochranWilliam (Thad) Thad CochranBottom line Bottom line Alabama zeroes in on Richard Shelby's future MORE’s retirement in March, leads the poll with 38 percent support, well short of the 50 percent mark. President TrumpDonald TrumpVirginia GOP gubernatorial nominee acknowledges Biden was 'legitimately' elected Biden meets with DACA recipients on immigration reform Overnight Health Care: States begin lifting mask mandates after new CDC guidance | Walmart, Trader Joe's will no longer require customers to wear masks | CDC finds Pfizer, Moderna vaccines 94 percent effective in health workers MORE endorsed Hyde-Smith in August.

Democrat Mike Espy follows with 29 percent support, while conservative GOP candidate Chris McDaniel got 15 percent and Democrat Tobey Bartee received 2 percent.

The poll found that in a runoff between the top two finishers, Hyde-Smith got 50 percent support compared to Espy's 36 percent.

In a runoff between Espy and McDaniel, Espy leads with 43 percent support to McDaniel's 36 percent.

Should a runoff be necessary, it would take place three weeks after Election Day — creating the possibility that control of the Senate could be decided by the results of the runoff. 

Trump won Mississippi in 2016 by 18 points over Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonDemocrats say it's up to GOP to stop Trump 2024 Hillary Clinton to speak at Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders summit More than half of eligible Latinos voted in 2020, setting record MORE and currently holds a 60 percent approval rating in the state, according to the survey.

The poll was conducted Oct. 13-18 and surveyed 511 likely voters with a margin of error of 6.1 percentage points.