Kobach has lead in Kansas Senate race unless Pompeo enters: report

Kobach has lead in Kansas Senate race unless Pompeo enters: report
© Getty Images

An internal GOP poll from the party's Senate campaign arm shows former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach with a commanding lead over the Republican primary field unless Secretary of State Mike PompeoMike PompeoNoem to travel to South Carolina for early voting event Poll: Trump leads 2024 GOP primary trailed by Pence, DeSantis Pence v. Biden on China: Competing but consistent visions MORE were to enter the fray.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the poll, conducted for the National Republican Senatorial Committee, found Kobach with the support of 43 percent of likely Kansas primary voters if Pompeo is not in the mix.

However, with Pompeo hypothetically on the GOP primary ballot, the secretary of State garnered 54 percent of GOP support compared to Kobach’s 17 percent.

ADVERTISEMENT

Pompeo has repeatedly shot down rumors that he would leave his post as President TrumpDonald TrumpMyPillow CEO to pull ads from Fox News Haaland, Native American leaders press for Indigenous land protections Simone Biles, Vince Lombardi and the courage to walk away MORE's secretary of State to enter the Senate race, but Trump last month touted Pompeo, saying he would "win in a landslide" if he ran for the seat.

"Mike would win easily in Kansas," Trump said. "He came to me and said 'Look, I'd rather stay where I am,' but he loves Kansas, he loves the people of Kansas. If he thought there was a chance of losing that seat, I think he would do that and he would win in a landslide."

Sixty percent of likely voters who support Kobach would shift support to Pompeo should he enter the race, the poll found. In a head-to-head matchup, Pompeo would beat Kobach 68 percent to 24 percent, the survey found, according to the Journal.

While Kobach leads in the poll without Pompeo in the race, Republicans are wary of his chances of winning the general election after he lost his 2018 gubernatorial bid to Democrat Laura Kelly.

"If Mike Pompeo doesn't run, we don't have a prayer," a Republican strategist who had seen the poll told The Wall Street Journal.

A previous poll reported on by the Journal found Kobach losing to a Democrat in the 2020 Kansas Senate race by 10 percentage points.

ADVERTISEMENT

Kobach touted the polling numbers showing him with strong support should Pompeo remain on the outside.

"These numbers reflect what we have seen on the campaign trail. Republicans across Kansas overwhelmingly support our campaign," Kobach told the news outlet. "And there is still room to grow and push the needle past 50 percent."

The poll was conducted by phone from Oct. 21-23 and surveyed 607 likely Kansas primary voters. The poll's margin of error is plus or minus 4.1 percentage points.