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New polls show bad news for GOP

New polls done by NBC/Marist of the Senate and gubernatorial races in Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin show things may be taking a turn for the worse for Republicans in the fall elections. All three states show President Donald Trump's approval rating underwater.

Posted: Jul 29, 2018 11:43 AM
Updated: Jul 29, 2018 11:43 AM

Three new polls done by NBC/Marist of the Senate and gubernatorial races in Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin show things may be taking a turn for the worse for Republicans in the fall elections.

The race for governor in Wisconsin has some unpleasant news for Republican incumbent, Gov. Scott Walker, who is seeking his third term in 2018. Sixty-one percent of Wisconsin's registered voters think they should "give a new person a chance" instead of re-electing Walker, the polling shows.

Wisconsin Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers will be Walker's most likely Democratic competitor. His numbers show him ahead of the next contestant by 19 percentage points.

When facing one another, Evers currently leads Walker 54% to 41%, a significantly higher number than the Marquette University poll only a month ago, showing Walker beating Evers by four percentage points.

Wisconsin Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin has an advantage over both her possible challengers -- Kevin Nicholson and Leah Vukmir -- by at least 15 percentage points. CNN has the race rated as lean Democrat in Baldwin's favor.

In Minnesota, the Democratic-Farmer-Labor primary for governor is heating up, with Lori Swanson leading Tim Walz by four percentage points. Tim Pawlenty will likely be the Republican nominee, as he's beating his challenger -- Jeff Johnson -- 51% to 32%.

For Senate in Minnesota, Democratic incumbent Sen. Tina Smith is beating Karin Housley by 14 percentage points. CNN rates the race as likely Democrat. Both Senate seats are up for grabs in Minnesota, with Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar's race rated as solidly Democratic.

Michigan Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow is expected to win her re-election against either John James or Sandy Pensler -- leading both by at least 15 percentage points, according to the poll.

If November's gubernatorial election in Michigan results in a showdown between Gretchen Whitmer, the Democrat, and Bill Schuette, the Republican, Whitmer is expected to win, according to the poll.

However, both Whitmer and Schuette face primaries in August that could be competitive. Whitmer will go up against Shri Thanedar and Abdul El-Sayed, whom she leads by 4 and 9 percentage points respectively. In the Republican race, Schuette leads his closest competitor 33% to 26%.

All three states show President Donald Trump's approval rating underwater. The lowest rating is in Minnesota, where 37% approve of the job Trump's doing as President and about half disapprove.

These possible battleground states also would rather have a Congress controlled by the Democrats, with 45% in Michigan, 47% in Wisconsin and 48% in Minnesota saying they would prefer that to the current Republican-controlled Congress.

Michigan and Wisconsin both went for Trump in the 2016 election by a very slim margin -- with Trump beating Clinton with between 0.2% and 1.6% of the vote. Clinton won in Minnesota but by a much slimmer margin than expected.

The NBC/Marist poll of 1,033 adults was conducted July 15th through July 19th, 2018 in Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin by The Marist Poll sponsored and funded in partnership with NBC News. Adults 18 years of age and older residing in the state of Michigan were contacted on landline or mobile numbers and interviewed in English by telephone using live interviewers.

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