GOP state Rep. Mike Bost had a 6-point lead on freshman Democratic Rep. Bill Enyart in a targeted Illinois House race, according to an internal poll conducted for Bost's campaign and provided first to CQ Roll Call.
Bost garnered 43 percent to Enyart's 37 percent, according to the poll, conducted by GOP polling firm The Tarrance Group.
The poll also found Enyart was not well established in his Illinois' 12th District one year and five months into his term. Only 27 percent of voters approved of the job Enyart is doing, with half telling pollsters they were ready for new leadership in Congress.
The poll, seen above, surveyed 400 likely registered voters via telephone interviews from April 21-23. It had a margin of error of 4.9 points.
According to the poll, 60 percent of voters were familiar with Bost, who is known in Illinois for his passionate floor speeches in the state legislature.
Illinois is a key component to the National Republican Congressional Committee's "Drive to 245" campaign, which seeks to pick up 12 seats across the House map in November. Bost and former Rep. Robert Dold — who is running a comeback bid in Illinois' 10th District — were recently named "Young Guns" in the NRCC's program to aid promising candidates.
As of March 31, Bost reported $201,000 in cash on hand while Enyart reported $555,000 in the bank.
Voters in this southwestern Illinois district, which shares a border with St. Louis, voted for President Barack Obama by a 2-point margin in 2012, making this a competitive seat in November. It is rated a Leans Democratic district by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call.