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Poll shows Klobuchar with a 26-point lead over Bills

Eighty percent of respondents had no opinion of the Republican-endorsed Bills.

Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar leads endorsed her Republican-endorsed opponent Kurt Bills by 26 points, according to a survey released Friday by Public Policy Polling. 

Her huge lead can be credited to two things: her popularity in the state (she has a 57 percent approval rating) and the low name recognition of her opponent: 80 percent of the poll’s respondents said they had no opinion of Bills, a first-term state representative who rode a wave of support from Ron Paul backers to the Republican Party’s endorsement last month. Klobuchar leads Bills 55-29.

Klobuchar has a a 73 percent approval rating among moderates. Seventy-nine percent of moderates have no opinion of Bills, but his approval rating among somewhat conservative (85 percent) and very conservative (79 percent) voters is very high.

PPP concludes: “The 2012 Minnesota Senate race may be up there for the most boring one we’ve polled on this cycle.”

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The pollster looked at Sen. Al Franken’s approval rating, which is at 50 percent. He leads three potential 2014 opponents (former Sen. Norm Coleman, former Gov. Tim Pawlenty and U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann) by at least 10 points each.

Public Policy Polling also looked at the marriage amendment on November’s ballot and the presidential race in the state in its survey of 973 voters last week.

Devin Henry can be reached at