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Poll finds Libertarian Senate candidate running ahead of GOP in New Mexico

Poll finds Libertarian Senate candidate running ahead of GOP in New Mexico
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Libertarian Party Senate candidate Gary JohnsonGary Earl JohnsonHillicon Valley: Social media struggles with new forms of misinformation | US, Russia decline to join pledge on fighting cybercrimes | Trump hits Comcast after antitrust complaint | Zuckerberg pressed to testify before global panel Ex-Facebook exec ousted from company sparked controversy with pro-Trump views: report Heinrich wins reelection to Senate in New Mexico MORE is polling at 21 percent in New Mexico, behind Sen. Martin HeinrichMartin Trevor HeinrichManchin’s likely senior role on key energy panel rankles progressives Senate panel advances Trump’s energy nominee despite Dem objections Dems wonder if Sherrod Brown could be their magic man MORE (D-N.M.) but with nearly twice the support shown for GOP candidate Mick Rich in the poll.

An Emerson College poll released Monday showed Heinrich winning 39 percent on the sample ballot while Rich only took 11 percent. Thirty percent of those polled were undecided.

Johnson has high name recognition in the state. He's a former governor and won attention for his presidential run in 2016.

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Still, Reason Magazine reported that the poll could signal a historic vote count for Johnson.

A 21 percent showing would mark the second-highest vote total a Libertarian Senatorial candidate has ever received, Reason reports. Joe Miller garnered 29 percent of the vote in 2016 while running for the Senate in Alaska.

The Emerson poll also found that New Mexico Republicans slightly favor Johnson above Rich, at 27 percent to 25 percent respectively. However, Johnson's advantage is within the poll's margin of error.

The numbers are especially difficult for Rich as Johnson only announced his candidacy on Tuesday, a few days before the poll was conducted.

“What a crazy, wacky world we live in,” Rich told the Santa Fe New Mexican last week, arguing that Johnson is “more in sync with [Vermont Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersChildren's singer Raffi on criticizing Trump: 'You have to fight fascism with everything you’ve got' Sanders to Colbert: 'You will be my vice presidential candidate!' Sanders: Trump said midterms were about him, and he lost MORE] than he is with Republicans.”

Emerson College's poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.6 percentage points and was conducted from Aug. 17-18 with a sample of 500 registered voters.