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Missouri Governor: Nixon’s Support Slips Below 50%, but Still Tops GOP Challengers

Missouri’s Gubernatorial race has grown slightly more interesting this month. Attorney General Jay Nixon’s lead over both potential Republican challengers has been chopped nearly in half. Still, Nixon leads Rep. Kenny Hulshof 49% to 38% and State Treasurer Sarah Steelman 46% to 37%.

Last month, Nixon led Hulshof 54% to 34%. His lead over Steelman was nearly the same, 56% to 34%. Missouri will hold their primary elections on August 5 to determine which Republican will face Nixon in the fall.

Against both Republicans, Nixon has lost ground among male voters. Against Hulshof, Nixon now leads 46% to 39% among men, down from a seventeen point lead last month. He leads Hulshof 51% to 36% among women. While Nixon leads Steelman by fourteen among women, but just by two points among men in the state (43% to 41%). Last month, the Democrat led Steelman by sixteen points among men.

Both races are tight among voters not affiliated with either major political party. Among this demographic, Nixon tops Hulshof 41% to 38%, but falls behind Steelman, 39% to 37%. Last month, the Democrat led both hopefuls by double-digits among this group.

Nixon’s favorable ratings have also dropped over the past month. Fifty-seven percent (57%) have a favorable view of the Democrat, down from 64% last month. Meanwhile, 30% hold an unfavorable view of Nixon.

For the second straight month, Steelman’s favorables are marginally better than Hulshof’s. While 46% hold a favorable view of the State Treasurer, 42% say the same about Hulshof.

Voter approval of Republican Gov. Matt Blunt, who in a surprise announcement in January chose not to seek re-election, remains steady this month. Just 35% rate his job performance good or excellent. The same percentage of Missouri voters (34%) say he is doing a poor job, up a point from last month.

Missouri’s Presidential race finds John McCain modestly in front of Barack Obama.

This survey was conducted in partnership with Fox Television Stations Inc.

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Missouri Likely Democratic

Latest RR Poll

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In Trade

2004 Results

Jay Nixon (D)




Kenny Hulshof (R)




This telephone survey of 500 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports July 7, 2008. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

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Favorable Ratings for Gubernatorial Candidates in Missouri




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About Rasmussen Reports

Rasmussen Reports is an electronic publishing firm specializing in the collection, publication, and distribution of public opinion polling information.

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Scott Rasmussen, president of Rasmussen Reports, has been an independent pollster for more than a decade.