Dems falling behind in latest polls for key senate races

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WASHINGTON — The path to a blue Senate is looking more unlikely, as even races with Democratic incumbents are turning out to be squeakers.

In Indiana, Democratic Sen. Joe Donnelly has fallen behind Republican Mike Braun among likely voters, 43 percent to 46 percent, according to a new CBS News Battleground Tracker poll released Sunday, a little more than a week from the Nov. 6 midterm elections.

In Florida, Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson and Florida’s Republican Gov. Rick Scott, who is vying to take Nelson’s seat, are tied at 46 percent.

Among the bigger poll of registered voters, Scott has a two-point edge, with 42 percent saying they support the Republican, while 40 percent back the Democrat.

A third CBS News Battleground Tracker poll shows good news for Democrats, with Rep. Kyrsten Sinema three points ahead of Republican Rep. Martha McSally in Arizona.

The two women are competing for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Republican Sen. Jeff Flake, one of the few GOP critics of President Trump.

Forty-seven percent of Arizona’s likely voters prefer Sinema, compared to the 44 percent who prefer McSally.

When those same voters were asked about their vote for Arizona’s governor, they preferred the Republican incumbent Doug Ducey by 11 points in the traditionally red state.

Ducey received support from 52 percent of likely voters, while his Democratic challenger David Garcia received 41 percent support.

This year’s Senate map has always been challenging for Democrats, as the party must defend 23 seats — 10 in states that Trump won.

Two independents who caucus with Democrats are also up for re-election.

Meanwhile, Republicans are defending just eight seats.

In Indiana, where incumbent Donnelly is facing trouble, 42 percent said they were casting a Senate vote to help support Trump.

Thirty-three percent of Indiana’s registered voters said their Senate vote would be in opposition of Trump.

In Arizona, a bigger chunk of voters want to slap back at Trump.

Thirty-eight percent said their Senate vote would signify opposition of Trump, while 34 percent said their vote would be in support of Trump.

Sunshine State voters were asked a slightly different version of the question.

The biggest group, 36 percent, said they want a senator who supports Trump as much as possible.

Another 20 percent said they wanted to elect a conservative who will be independent from Trump from time to time.

Matching that, were the 20 percent of Florida voters who wished to elect a progressive who will occasionally work with Trump.

Finally, 24 percent of Florida voters said they wanted a Senate progressive who will oppose Trump as much as possible.

The survey polled 991 likely voters between Oct. 23-26 and has a plus/minus 4 percentage point margin of error in Florida, 4.1 percentage points in Arizona and 3.7 percentage points in Indiana.

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