ATLANTA — Incumbent U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson is leading in his bid for re-election, but he may not be able to avoid a runoff this November, a new poll reveals.
The Landmark Communications poll found Isakson, a Republican, has 50 percent of the vote. Democrat Jim Barksdale has 37 percent of the vote.
Libertarian candidate Allen Buckley is looking to play the role of spoiler. He has 5 percent of the vote, the poll found.
Isakson needs a true majority of the votes cast (more than 50 percent of the vote, or 50 percent plus one) to win the election outright.
“It appears that the Barksdale campaign has grinded to a halt, while Senator Isakson’s campaign has solidified his vote,” Jordan Fuchs, vice president of Landmark Communications, said in a news release. “If this trend continues, Senator Isakson will win reelection by a double digit margin.”
Buckley in 2008 famously forced a runoff for then-incumbent U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss when he picked up 3.4 percent of the vote. Chambliss earned 49.8 percent of the vote, below the necessary majority needed to avoid a runoff.
Chambliss defeated Democrat Jim Martin, who picked up 46.8 percent of the vote in the general election, in the runoff. Chambliss did not seek re-election in 2014; U.S. Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., now holds his former seat.