Poll: 33% of Kentucky voters approve of McConnell

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by JUUL Labs - House to vote to condemn Trump tweet GOP put on the back foot by Trump's race storm Overnight Health Care — Presented by PCMA —Biden unveils health care plan | Proposal pitches subsidies, public option | Biden vows if you like your health insurance, 'you can keep it' | Sanders protests planned Philadelphia hospital closure MORE’s (R-Ky.) approval rating is underwater in Kentucky ahead of his reelection race next year, according to a new Public Policy Polling (PPP) survey released Thursday.

About 33 percent of registered Kentucky voters polled approve of the job McConnell is doing, while 56 percent disapprove and 11 percent are unsure. Additionally, 32 percent think McConnell “deserves to be reelected,” and 61 percent think it’s “time for someone new.” 

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The PPP poll was conducted on behalf of the Ditch Mitch Fund, an advocacy group that opposes McConnell. McConnell’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill.

Despite low approval ratings, McConnell holds a razor-thin lead against a generic Democratic opponent. About 45 percent of Kentucky voters say they would vote for the Senate leader and 42 percent say they would support a “Democratic opponent.” About 12 percent are unsure. 

Exactly half of the people surveyed in the PPP poll said they supported McConnell in 2014.

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerNYT: Don't make Acosta a political martyr Charities say they never received donations touted by Jeffrey Epstein: report Schumer to donate Epstein campaign contributions to groups fighting sexual violence MORE (D-N.Y.) is reportedly courting former Marine fighter pilot and recent congressional candidate Amy McGrath to challenge McConnell next year. Steven Cox, a Kentucky health care advocate, already declared his candidacy in the race.

McConnell consistently polls poorly but has been serving in the Senate since 1985. Morning Consult found last month that the Kentucky Republican was the third most unpopular senator in the country, with 47 percent of Kentuckians disapproving with his job performance. He was only more popular than Sens. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeFlake urges Republicans to condemn 'vile and offensive' Trump tweets Flake responds to Trump, Jimmy Carter barbs: 'We need to stop trying to disqualify each other' Jeff Flake responds to Trump's 'greener pastures' dig on former GOP lawmakers MORE (R-Ariz.), who retired, and Claire McCaskillClaire Conner McCaskillTrump nominees meet fiercest opposition from Warren, Sanders, Gillibrand Feds allow campaigns to accept discounted cybersecurity services GOP frets over nightmare scenario for Senate primaries MORE (D-Mo.), who was voted out of office. 

The Senate leader’s approval rating nationally is also underwater, with a Hill–HarrisX poll showing last month that 40 percent of Americans view McConnell unfavorably, while 28 percent have a favorable view.

The PPP poll surveyed 748 registered Kentucky voters from Feb. 11 to 12 and has a margin of error of 3.6 percentage points.