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Mandel closes the gap in Ohio

A new Quinnipiac University poll of the Ohio Senate race shows that Republican challenger (and friend of Power Line) Josh Mandel has moved to within 6 points of incumbent Senator Sherrod Brown. 46 percent favor Brown, while 40 percent favor Mandel. A survey by PPP puts Brown up by 8 points, 45-37. As the incumbent, Brown cannot be happy that he commands 4 to 5 points less than 50 percent in current polling.

Nor can Brown be happy with the trend. For months he enjoyed a 15 point lead. In the last Quinnipiac survey, from late March, Brown led by 10 points.

The new Quinnipiac poll has President Obama and Mitt Romney in a statistical dead heat in Ohio (Obama 45; Romney 44). So, Mandel, who is not that well known, has room to grow. However, unlike Obama, whose approval rating in Ohio is just about even, Brown holds a 41-30 favorability rating. To maintain it, he may have to distance himself from the president more than he has so far.

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