Montana Standard: Tester, Rehberg in dead heat for 2012 election

HELENA – U.S. Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., and his Republican challenger for 2012, Rep. Denny Rehberg, are in a virtual dead heat for the race right now, a Lee Newspapers poll of Montana voters shows.

In a telephone poll of 625 registered voters early last week, 46 percent said they would vote to re-elect Tester if the election were held today – and 45 percent said they would choose Rehberg. Only 9 percent of those polled were undecided.

The poll has a margin of error of plus-or-minus four percentage points, essentially making the contest a tie at this point.

Tester, 54, a farmer from Big Sandy, will be running next year for re-election to a second term as Montana’s junior U.S. senator. He won election to the post in 2006, narrowly defeating incumbent Republican Sen. Conrad Burns.

Rehberg, 55, has been Montana’s only U.S. House representative since 2001, winning re-election to that job five times.

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