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Poll: Braley, Ernst Tied

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DAVENPORT, Iowa — A new poll says that Democrat Bruce Braley and Republican Joni Ernst are tied in the race for Iowa’s U.S. Senate seat.

The NBC/Marist poll of registered voters in the state says the two each got the support of 43 percent of those polled. Fourteen percent said they are undecided.

Voters have a mixed view of both candidates, the poll said, with Braley getting positive marks from 36 percent, while Ernst got a favorable rating from 38 percent. Braley got a negative rating from 32 percent of the respondents, while 33 percent viewed Ernst unfavorably.

About a third of the voters said they were unsure of their opinion of the both candidates.

“Any way you slice the numbers you end up with a close race,” Lee Miringoff, the director of the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion, told NBC News. “This is one that bears watching as the campaign unfolds.”

The poll was conducted among 1,599 registered voters between July 7 and 13 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points. Some other polls in the race have sampled the opinions of likely voters.

Partisans on both sides of the Senate race touted the poll’s results early Wednesday.

Republicans and Democrats both claimed that the other side had outspent them and that the poll results, therefore, ratified their own candidates’ strength.

The race has been marked by mostly outside spending since the June primary.

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