New Democratic polling of Illinois’ 12th District gave GOP Rep. Mike Bost a 1-point lead over Democrat Brendan Kelly, an improvement for Kelly since a July survey of the race.
Bost led Kelly 46 to 45 percent in the survey commissioned by End Citizens United.
Global Strategy Group surveyed 404 likely voters from Oct. 3-7. The margin of error was plus or minus 4.9 percentage points. In Global Strategy Group’s July survey of the race, Bost led Kelly 50 to 41 percent.
End Citizens United spent $600,000 attacking Bost and boosting Kelly in TV and digital ads and direct mail. The group hit Bost for taking money from “drug companies profiting from the opioid crisis,” while touting Kelly’s record as a state attorney.
A Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee poll of the 12th District in late September also gave Bost a 1-point lead among likely voters, 42 to 41 percent. The committee surveyed 574 likely voters Sept. 26-27 through live and automated calls. The margin of error was plus or minus 4.2 percentage points.
A New York Times Upshot/Siena College poll from earlier in September also showed Bost ahead by 1 point, 44 to 43 percent with 13 percent undecided.
On paper, the 12th District has been trending away from Democrats. President Donald Trump carried the district by 15 points in 2016. Former President Barack Obama carried it by less than 2 points in 2012 after carrying it by double digits in 2008. National Democrats didn’t even land a candidate for the 2016 House race in the downstate district, when Bost won a second term by 15 points. But this year’s race became more competitive with the entrance of Kelly, whom national Democrats had been courting for years.