Tennessee Senate race: Bredesen and Blackburn deadlocked in new poll

The race to be the next senator from Tennessee is deadlocked.According to a ...

Posted: Oct 18, 2018 5:39 PM
Updated: Oct 18, 2018 5:39 PM

The race to be the next senator from Tennessee is deadlocked.

According to a new Vanderbilt University poll, former Democratic Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen and Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn are separated by a statistically insignificant 1 percentage point among registered voters in the contentious Senate race, the latest evidence that a race Republicans once believed would be guaranteed for their side could be one of the closest on Election Night.

Continents and regions

Elections (by type)

Elections and campaigns

Government and public administration

Government organizations - US

Marsha Blackburn

North America

Phil Bredesen

Political Figures - US

Political organizations

Politics

Southeastern United States

Tennessee

The Americas

United States

US Congress

US Federal elections

US political parties

US Republican Party

US Senate

US Senate elections

Among voters who say they are certain to vote, the race is tied -- 45% for Bredesen and 45% for Blackburn.

"The bottom line is that Tennessee's Senate race will be determined by which candidate is better able to turn out their base, as well as any national waves that occur—blue or otherwise," said John Geer, Gertrude Conaway Vanderbilt Professor of Political Science.

After Republican Sen. Bob Corker announced his retirement, party officials in Washington believed the seat would almost certainly stay red because President Donald Trump won Tennessee by 26 percentage points. But Bredesen's entrance into the race gave Democrats hope, given the former governor enjoys a deep well of independent support from his time in office.

That is evident in the latest poll, which found that Bredesen is significantly more popular with Republicans than Blackburn is with Democrats. Thirteen percent of Republicans told the pollsters that they planned to vote for Bredesen, while 5 percent of Democrats said they would back Blackburn.

"Our poll results show that this race is still very much a tossup," said Josh Clinton, co-director of the Vanderbilt Poll. "Eight percent of voters are still undecided, and depending on who those voters choose, and who turns out to vote, this race could easily go either way."

Bredesen has run as a moderate Democrat in the 2018 Senate race, pledging to break with his party when needed and back the President when he believes it is best for the state. One recent example: Bredesen announced that, if he was in the Senate, he would have voted yes for Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh, whose contentious but successful nomination was marred by sexual assault allegations and emotional fights on the left.

Blackburn, an arch conservative with deep ties to Republicans in Washington, has relied on the natural political inclinations of the state and looked to tie Bredesen to leaders in Washington like Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Bredesen, however, has said he would not back Schumer for Democratic leader in the Senate if he wins.

While the Vanderbilt polls found the race tied, other recent polls have found the Republican with a slight lead.

The Vanderbilt Poll was conducted by telephone October 8-13 among a random sample of 800 Tennessee registered voters. Results for the full sample have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 4.9 percentage points.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 300913

Reported Deaths: 5332
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion41330845
Lake26364448
Allen17299290
Elkhart16665212
St. Joseph16319220
Hamilton12459164
Vanderburgh9428112
Tippecanoe826727
Porter791279
Johnson6139164
Hendricks5807154
Vigo574474
Monroe525247
Clark495374
Delaware4789103
Madison4760119
LaPorte446894
Kosciusko446139
Howard325575
Warrick316072
Floyd306177
Bartholomew303262
Wayne295261
Cass293431
Marshall289944
Grant258747
Noble246846
Hancock243749
Henry237136
Boone235154
Dubois230430
Dearborn208829
Jackson206033
Morgan200643
Knox178017
Gibson177022
Clinton174920
Shelby174554
Lawrence171646
DeKalb171229
Adams165219
Miami155114
Wabash153018
Daviess152243
Fayette145233
Steuben141113
Jasper138311
Harrison137624
LaGrange136629
Montgomery131226
Whitley129910
Ripley123714
Decatur123542
Huntington122310
Posey118913
Putnam118326
Wells118327
Randolph117819
White117421
Clay115621
Jefferson114214
Greene100253
Scott99818
Jay95012
Starke89221
Sullivan86615
Fulton81117
Perry80921
Jennings80514
Spencer8047
Fountain7378
Washington7176
Carroll66813
Franklin65925
Orange65728
Vermillion5832
Owen5816
Parke5416
Newton54012
Tipton53726
Rush5216
Blackford51211
Pike50218
Pulaski36810
Martin3485
Brown3263
Benton3251
Crawford2781
Union2621
Switzerland2473
Warren2352
Ohio2257
Unassigned0265

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 363304

Reported Deaths: 6020
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin49267665
Cuyahoga35214736
Hamilton29462371
Montgomery19636225
Butler14472144
Lucas14033409
Summit12962310
Stark8529197
Warren798975
Mahoning7068299
Lake662766
Lorain623697
Clermont563946
Delaware540335
Licking535875
Fairfield523763
Trumbull5159144
Greene510563
Clark501064
Allen460685
Marion457751
Wood4394107
Medina428654
Miami416465
Pickaway396448
Columbiana339597
Portage334471
Tuscarawas317557
Wayne314993
Richland306732
Mercer284737
Ross239259
Hancock232736
Muskingum231910
Auglaize223230
Putnam221449
Erie217165
Darke217058
Ashtabula215753
Geauga197351
Scioto193615
Union18658
Lawrence185436
Shelby184815
Athens18454
Seneca173118
Belmont158529
Madison156218
Sandusky152327
Preble148421
Huron147518
Defiance137921
Holmes137739
Logan123613
Knox122518
Fulton122025
Crawford119116
Ottawa118930
Washington116427
Clinton103414
Ashland102722
Williams10238
Jefferson10124
Highland99517
Henry98422
Brown9644
Champaign9345
Jackson90312
Van Wert8976
Fayette89217
Hardin86118
Morrow8552
Guernsey83313
Coshocton81413
Perry77012
Adams75012
Pike7261
Wyandot70516
Gallia70413
Paulding62710
Hocking61011
Noble59722
Carroll44310
Meigs37612
Monroe31021
Morgan2395
Vinton2105
Harrison1913
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Clear
34° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 34°
Angola
Scattered Clouds
34° wxIcon
Hi: 38° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 28°
Huntington
Overcast
37° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 32°
Decatur
Overcast
37° wxIcon
Hi: 43° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 33°
Van Wert
Overcast
37° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 33°
Snow/Rain Showers Tuesday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events