The Republican primary in the Kansas 4th District has gotten a lot more attention, but a new poll indicates that the race on the Democratic side may be unexpectedly in play as well.
A KWCH poll by Survey USA shows retired court services officer Robert Tillman — a first-time candidate — with a slight lead over Rep. Raj Goyle, D-Wichita.
The poll showed 40 percent supported Tillman with 36 percent for Goyle and 24 percent undecided.
The pollster cautioned not to read too much into the results, which are within the relatively wide margin of error of plus or minus 5.5 percentage points.
But throughout the race, Democratic leaders have seen Goyle — a prolific fundraiser who wins as a Democrat in a Republican-leaning state House district — as their best hope for wresting away the congressional seat now held by Rep. Todd Tiahrt, R-Goddard.
Tillman has campaigned on his unqualified support for President Obama and his agenda.
Goyle has highlighted his willingness and ability to work with Republicans as a legislator.
On the Republican side, GOP National Committeeman Mike Pompeo and businessman Wink Hartman remain essentially tied with 32 and 31 percent respectively.
The pollster noted that Sen. Jean Schodorf has picked up support since an identical poll three weeks ago and now has 16 percent.
Jim Anderson has 9 percent and Paij Rutschman, a late entrant in the race, trails with 1 percent.
Nine percent of Republicans are undecided.
The survey includes views of 679 people likely to vote in the Republican primary and 335 likely to vote in the Democratic primary. The interviews were conducted July 11-13.