Democrats hoping for a major upset victory in a pivotal Ohio special election Tuesday touted a new poll suggesting the House race is a virtual tie, while Republicans made an all-out final push to avert a potentially embarrassing loss in a district they have controlled for decades. Several other states will head to the polls for key primary fights on Tuesday, including Missouri, Michigan, Kansas, and Washington. But the tight race for Ohio’s wealthy and highly educated 12th Congressional District, which has had a Republican representative for more than 35 years, is seen as a particularly crucial indicator of how President Trump’s progress in office could be faring with conservatives. Tuesday’s contest in Ohio is not a primary, but a special election to determine who will take the House seat held by retired Rep. Pat Tiberi. A poll conducted earlier this month by the Emerson College Polling Society and released Monday found that the upstart Democrat in the race, 31-year-old Danny O’Connor, is holding onto a one-percentage point lead over two-term Republican State Senator Troy Balderson, 56, with seven percent of very likely voters still undecided. That’s well within the poll’s margin of error, and it mirrored a Monmouth University survey released last week showing no statistically significant daylight between the candidates. Trump took the district by 11 points in 2016.
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