A poll done by an adviser to U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander shows the senator holding a 29-point lead in the Republican primary, even after an appearance by radio show host Laura Ingraham on behalf of one of his challengers.
Alexander stands at 53 percent in a ballot test conducted July 27-29 by North Star Opinion Research, an adviser to the Alexander campaign. State Rep. Joe Carr, whom Ingraham campaigned last week, stands at 24 percent, and Memphis physician George Flinn stands at 5 percent.
The campaign released the results at The Tennessean's request Wednesday. A previous poll, taken before Ingraham's visit and before an endorsement of Carr by former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, showed Carr trailing Alexander by 32 percentage points.
Carr says the race is much closer. He cites a poll taken earlier this month on behalf of Tea Party Nation that showed him 7 percentage points behind Alexander.
According to North Star, 17 percent of like Republican voters were undecided or refused to respond. North Star president Whit Ayres said in a summary memo that undecided voters typically break disproportionately toward the challengers, but "even if that occurs, Senator Alexander's lead is sufficient to produce a comfortable margin of victory."
The North Star poll carries a a margin of error of 4 percent. Interviews were conducted by land line and cell phone using live interviewers.