NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WRKN) — Despite facing a challenger in the 2024 U.S. Senate race, Sen. Marsha Blackburn holds a sizeable polling advantage over Rep. Gloria Johnson, a new poll finds.
The poll, administered by Emerson College and released Tuesday morning, shows Blackburn outpacing the member of the state representative two-to-one, holding at 50% with Johnson trailing at 26% and a quarter of respondents undecided or supporting someone else entirely.
Blackburn is looking for her second term in D.C. Johnson, who gained a national profile earlier this year as a member of the “Tennessee 3,” announced her Senate run in September, acknowledging it would be an uphill climb to boot Blackburn from her seat.
“It’s an uphill battle, there’s no question,” she said at an earlier campaign event. “But her last race was about 10 points’ difference. We can get that 10 points. A lot has happened from five years ago.”
For her part, Blackburn told News 2 she’s ready for a fight. She defeated Democratic former governor Phil Bredesen in 2018 for the seat and is already sizing up the field of challengers in 2024.
“We know that there are three that are in the Democrat primary. They’re all kind of out of that socialist wing of the primary: not for tax cuts, for an open border, for allowing those that are illegally in the country to vote,” she told News 2. “I know that one of the opponents has been called the most liberal member of the state house. Democrats are going to have their primary. We’re going to run on our record.”
According to the poll, Sen. Blackburn holds the most support among all educational demographics except those with postgraduate degrees. Of postgraduates, Johnson holds a one-point advantage, 46% to 45%.
Rep. Johnson also has the highest support among Black Tennessee voters at 56%, compared to Blackburn’s 11%. White voters, meanwhile, show 60% in favor of Blackburn and 19% for Johnson.