Polls: Dems lead in three key Senate races

Polls: Dems lead in three key Senate races
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Democratic Senate candidates are leading in three key battleground states as the party looks to defend a difficult map ahead of the November midterm elections, according to new polls.

Arizona Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D) and Ohio Sen. Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownSmaller tax refunds put GOP on defensive Democrats brush off GOP 'trolling' over Green New Deal GOP Green New Deal stunt is a great deal for Democrats MORE (D) are both leading their GOP challengers by double digits, while Florida Sen. Bill NelsonClarence (Bill) William Nelson2020 party politics in Puerto Rico There is no winning without Latinos as part of your coalition Dem 2020 candidates court Puerto Rico as long nomination contest looms MORE (D) is up by just 4 points, about the margin of error in the new NBC News/Marist polls released Tuesday evening.

The results show how some of the major Senate races this cycle are shaping up with less than five months until Election Day.


In Arizona, Sinema has mounted a strong candidacy that's unified the party as several Republican candidates continue to battle ahead of their primary Aug. 28.

Brown continues to hold a significant lead in Ohio as Rep. Jim RenacciJames (Jim) B. RenacciGOP rep: If Mueller had found collusion, ‘investigation would have wrapped up very quickly’ House Ethics Committee extends probe into Renacci Sherrod Brown says he has 'no real timetable' for deciding on 2020 presidential run MORE (R) has struggled to close the gap after winning his own primary in early May.

And the Florida battle between Nelson and the state's deep-pocketed Republican Gov. Rick Scott is expected to be one of the premier races in the country — as well as one of the costliest.

As the presumptive Democratic nominee, Sinema leads Rep. Martha McSallyMartha Elizabeth McSallyArmy calls base housing hazards 'unconscionable,' details steps to protect families Poll shows McSally, Kelly tied in Arizona Senate race Mark Kelly's campaign raises over M in days after launching Senate bid MORE (R), the frontrunner in the Arizona GOP primary, by 11 points in the new poll. Former state Sen. Kelli Ward trails Sinema by 10 points, while former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio is behind the Democrat by 25 points.

McSally leads the crowded primary field with 30 percent to Ward's 28 percent, with Arpaio sitting in third with the support of 21 percent of respondents. 

Democrats are bullish on flipping the Arizona seat being vacated by retiring Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeTrump suggests Heller lost reelection bid because he was 'hostile' during 2016 presidential campaign Live coverage: Trump delivers State of the Union Sasse’s jabs at Trump spark talk of primary challenger MORE (R) — Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonRoger Stone shares, quickly deletes Instagram photo of federal judge on his case Barack, Michelle Obama expected to refrain from endorsing in 2020 Dem primary: report Why the national emergency? A second term may be Trump’s only shield from an indictment MORE only lost the state by 4 points in 2016 and the party believes a combination of strong turnout and lengthy GOP primary will help them in the fall. 

Republicans have sought to counter that enthusiasm by arguing that the race will narrow once the party coalesces around a candidate, pointing to the deep-red history of the state. 

In Ohio, the NBC poll shows Brown leading Renacci by 13 points in a state where Republicans came into the cycle confident they could knock off the longtime incumbent.

So far, public polling shows Brown leading by double-digits, and while Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDemocrats brush off GOP 'trolling' over Green New Deal Trump should beware the 'clawback' Congress Juan Williams: America needs radical solutions MORE (R-Ky.) recently told The Hill he's more confident about his party's chances in the state, he also left the state off his list of top targets during an interview with The Wall Street Journal. 

Nelson's 4-point lead in Florida, 49 percent to 45 percent, is good news for a campaign that's seen the race tighten since Scott officially launched his bid in April.

Scott has shown a willingness to spend his vast personal wealth on his political bids, only adding to the likelihood that the race will become one of the most expensive on the Senate map this year.

Democrats have taken aim at Scott's at times polarizing tenure leading the state, as well as his friendliness to President TrumpDonald John TrumpRosenstein expected to leave DOJ next month: reports Allies wary of Shanahan's assurances with looming presence of Trump States file lawsuit seeking to block Trump's national emergency declaration MORE. But Republicans see Nelson as beatable and have begun to rough him up in the weeks after Scott announced his bid. 

The Arizona poll reached 839 registered voters between June 17-21 with an overall margin of error of 4.5 percentage points and a margin of error of 6.7 percentage points for the 371 Republican primary voters polled.

The Florida survey of 947 registered voters contacted during the same period has a margin of error of 3.9 percentage points. 

In Ohio, the poll surveyed 778 registered voters between June 17-22 with a margin of error of 4.4 percentage points.