The Madison County Record Oct. 30, 2012, 9:30am

Democrat Bill Enyart has a five point lead over Republican Jason Plummer in the state's 12th Congressional district, according to a recent poll.

An Oct. 28 poll taken of 1,313 likely voters by We Ask America showed Enyart at 50.6 percent to Plummer at 45.6. Green Party candidate Paula Bradshaw polled 3.8 percent.

Two weeks earlier, the same polling group showed Plummer leading Enyart 44-42 percent.

"Illinois 12 encompasses a large part of southwest Illinois and has elected conservative Democrats since the original lungfish crawled out of the ocean," the poll's narrative reads.

"Still, Barack Obama is not particularly popular here, and Republican candidate Jason Plummer hoped to be able to parlay his family’s well-know lumber business and 6-foot 8-inch frame into a winning effort. Many thought he was well on his way, but a series of post-primary moves by the Democrats have put Plummer on an uphill climb against his main competitor, former Adjutant General Bill Enyart."

Recent mailings from Plummer's campaign prominently feature images of Enyart and Obama together with the message: "Bill Enyart wants to be a rubber stamp for Barack Obama's economic policies."

The newer We Ask America poll has a 2.7 percent margin of error.

According to the poll, Plummer leads Enyart by 20 points among Independent voters, 57-37.

"While Plummer has a 20 point lead among Independents, the 37/27 advantage Democrats have in IL-12 coupled with Enyart’s better numbers among his own party melt that Independent advantage away," the poll's narrative states.

"We’re not ready to say Enyart is breaking out from the pack, though. Examining the results from only those who voted in 2008 and 2010 (the most likely) gives Enyart a razor-thin lead that could be evaporated based on turnout. But this is a very tough district for any Republican."

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