Poll: GOP Kentucky governor holds 6-point lead over Democratic challenger

Poll: GOP Kentucky governor holds 6-point lead over Democratic challenger
© Greg Nash

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin (R) holds a 6-point lead in his reelection bid against challenger Attorney General Andy Beshear (D), according to a new Gravis Marketing poll.

The poll, conducted June 11-12, finds Bevin leading Beshear 48 percent to 42 percent ahead of the November election. 

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It is quite different from the only other poll of the race that has been factored into the RealClearPolitics's average of polls, which was conducted in December 2018 and found Beshear with an 8-point lead.

Democrats in the state have high hopes in the normally ruby-red state, with Beshear planning to make the election a referendum on expanding the state Medicaid program and focus on the work requirements to be a part of the program.

Democrats believe Bevin, who has been the least popular governor in the nation in some polls, is vulnerable on health care issues in particular.

“I think Bevin has left himself wide open for attacks on health care. It’s a target-rich environment,” David Turner, spokesman for the Democratic Governors Association, said earlier this month.

A December 2018 poll indicated 65 percent of Kentuckians oppose scaling back Medicaid in the state.

Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellThe Hill's Morning Report - A raucous debate on race ends with Trump admonishment White House, Congress inch toward debt, budget deal Republicans scramble to contain Trump fallout MORE (R-Ky.), who beat back a primary challenge from Bevin in 2014, will reportedly help Bevin in his reelection bid if needed.

Gravis polled 741 registered Kentucky voters for the survey, which has a margin of error of 3.6 percentage points.