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Missouri: GOP Senate Primary Is Tossup to the End

Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo
In the Missouri Senate GOP primary race, Rep. Todd Akin is seen as a lackluster campaigner, burdened by his comfort with earmarking, among other weaknesses.

The day of the primary, it seems like Carnahan probably didn’t make the right choice. Insiders see Clay poised for a solid victory. A poll by SurveyUSA in the field late last week found Clay leading a horse-race matchup of likely Democratic primary voters 56 percent to Carnahan’s 35 percent. Only a third of Carnahan’s current constituents were drawn into the newly configured 1st, which put him at a disadvantage from the start of his campaign.

While the Carnahan name is powerful and well-known in Missouri — members of his family have held most of the top elective offices in the state — the Clay name is probably more potent in the 1st district. Clay’s father served as a Member from 1969 through 2000 and was directly succeeded by his son. The Clay reign looks like it will continue for at least two more years.

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