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New HEG poll in Georgia: Deal tied with Carter, Perdue leads Nunn

According to a new survey conducted by the Hicks Evaluation Group (HEG) and the Truman National Security Project last weekend, Georgia Governor Nathan Deal (R) is tied with state Sen. Jason Carter (D)in the gubernatorial race, and Republican David Perdue is ahead of Michelle Nunn (D) in the election for the U.S. Senate. The poll included 788 likely general election voters and took place August 8-10, 2014.

The governor’s race seems to be a tossup with Carter at 45.4 percent of support and Deal at 45.3. The Senate race, however, is definitely tipping towards the Republicans with Perdue leading 47.6 to Nunn’s 41.5 percent. The margin of error is +/- 3.48 percent.

The results of the poll must be very troubling to Governor Deal, who should at this point have at least a slight lead as an incumbent. Clearly, the alleged ethics violations are slowly eating away at Deal’s campaign. The Governor promised more aggressive campaigning and better results after the primaries, and while he’s been much more visible ever since, this poll certainly doesn’t show much improvement in his popularity.

“If you don’t think I’m willing to fight, let me remind you of my background,” said Deal on July 21 in a conference call with Georgia GOP. “I have never lost and I do not intend to lose now. This is my last race. I am looking for no higher office.”

In the case of the Senate race, the results are not very surprising. Nunn was leading the GOP candidates just slightly while the Republicans were still in a heated primary campaign, but it was expected that once Republicans have one candidate to support, Nunn will have quite a challenge in convincing voters in this Republican state to vote for her.

The Georgia Senate battle is also an important one for the Democratic Party, which is trying to maintain its majority in the upper chamber, in a very difficult election year. Last Friday, Montana Democrat John Walsh dropped out of his campaign against a very strong Republican candidate U.S. Rep. Steve Daines because of a plagiarism controversy. The odds of finding a formidable opponent for Daines this late in the game are slim to none.

The Montana situation was not something Democrats could have foreseen and it makes races in states like Kentucky and Georgia that much more important. Republicans only need six seats to take over the U.S. Senate.

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