Poll shows races tightening in Kansas

A new poll out Monday by the Democratic firm Public Policy Polling shows the races for governor and U.S. Senate in Kansas getting tighter.

Based on a survey, 1,081 likely voters conducted over the weekend, the governor’s race between Republican Sam Brownback and his Democratic challenger Paul Davis is now tied, with each getting 42 percent, while Libertarian Keen Umbehr shows up with 6 percent.

“Umbehr is the unusual Libertarian who’s actually helping the Republican in the race by splitting the anti-Brownback vote,” PPP said in a news release.

Meanwhile, Republican Sen. Pat Roberts has narrowed his gap and now trails independent candidate Greg Orman by just three points, 44-41 percent. In September, PPP showed Orman with a 10-point lead.

Roberts has spent most of the campaign stressing that a vote for him is the surest path to gaining a Republican majority in the Senate, and the PPP poll suggests that message may be working for him. By a 52-35 percent margin, it said voters in Kansas would rather Republicans had control of the Senate than Democrats.

However, both Brownback and Roberts remain deeply unpopular among voters, according to the poll. It found 54 percent of those surveyed disapproved of the job Brownback is doing as governor, and 47 percent disapprove of the job Roberts is doing as senator.