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Nebraska: Johanns (R) 55% Kleeb (D) 40%

In the race to become Nebraska’s next United States Senator, Mike Johanns (R) leads Scott Kleeb (D) by fifteen percentage points. The first Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of the race shows Johanns earning 55% of the vote while Kleeb attracts support from 40%.

The two men are seeking to replace Republican Senator Chuck Hagel who decided against seeking re-election.

Johanns is supported by 78% of Republicans, Kleeb by 72% of Democrats, and unaffiliated voters are evenly divided.

Johanns is viewed favorably by 65% of the state’s voters, including 27% who have a Very Favorable opinion of the Republican candidate. Kleeb is viewed favorably by 56%, a figure that includes 17% with a Very Favorable opinion of the Democratic hopeful.

While Johanns is leading in Nebraska, the Democrats have at least a chance of picking up Republican seats in ten states--Virginia, Alaska, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Colorado, Oregon, Minnesota, Kentucky and Texas.. Two other Republican incumbents, Susan Collins in Maine and Pat Roberts in Kansas, are hovering just above the 50% mark in their bid for re-election. Republicans are struggling across the board and the number of Americans who consider themselves to be Democrats has soared to record highs.

Johanns was elected Governor of Nebraska in 1998. Four years later, he was re-elected by a 69% to 27% margin. Before completing his second term, he went to Washington and served as Secretary of Agriculture.

Kleeb, just 32 years old, ran for Congress from Nebraska’s 3rd Congressional District in 2006. He lost that race by ten percentage points but easily won the Democratic Primary last week to represent his party in this year’s Senate race.

Governor Dave Heineman (R) may be an asset for Johanns this campaign season. Sixty-four percent (64%) of Nebraska voters say Heineman is doing a good or an excellent job as Governor. Just 9% say he is doing a poor job.

In the Presidential race, John McCain leads Barack Obama in Nebraska.

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Nebraska Safe Republican

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2002 Results

Johanns (R)




Kleeb (D)




This telephone survey of 500 Likely Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports May 15, 2008. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 4 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

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Favorable Ratings for Senate Candidates in Nebraska




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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.

The Rasmussen Reports ElectionEdge™ Premium Service for Election 2008 offers the most comprehensive public opinion coverage ever provided for a Presidential election.

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