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Poll shows Bachmann leading Graves; Dems consider race winnable

A new poll finds Republican Congresswoman Michele Bachmann with a lead of nine percentage points over her Democratic challenger, Jim Graves. It was released just after a national Democratic committee listed the contest as one of the party's best chances to capture a House seat now held by the GOP. Meanwhile, Bachmann maintains a big fund-raising advantage over her rival.
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A new Survey USA poll conducted for KSTP shows Rep. Michele Bachmann with a lead of nine percentage points in her race with Democratic challenger Jim Graves. The poll found a gender gap. Graves holds a slight lead among women but Bachmann has commanding 18 percent advantage among men.

Earlier Monday the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee had expressed optimism about Graves' chances, adding the race to its list of House seats the committee thinks could turn from red to blue.

The latest batch of fundraising reports reinforce Bachmann's prowess when it comes to bringing in money. MPR reports the $4.5 million she raised in the third quarter looked to be more than the combined total of all the other major party candidates running in U.S. House and Senate races from Minnesota.

Graves later released his fundraising total of $1 million for the quarter. That includes $270,000 the multi-millionaire hotel developer donated to his own campaign.

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Poll taken by Graves shows race with Bachmann is even

An internal poll taken by the Democratic challenger shows U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann's lead over Jim Graves has shrunk to two percentage points, which is within the poll's margin of error. The Bachmann campaign says the poll lacks credibility. The Graves camp says it shows fallout from Bachmann's claims about the Muslim Brotherhood and its influence in Washington.

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Wealthy hotelier Jim Graves raised about $669,000 from donors in the all-important third quarter between late July and Sept. 30, MPR reports. Even with the $270,000 in additional cash of his own that he donated to the effort, his total paled in comparison to $4.5 million raised by his opponent Rep. Michele Bachmann. She is consistently among the most prolific fundraisers in the U.S. House.

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Rep. Michele Bachmann, the polarizing Minnesota Republican and Tea Party favorite, is often in more than her share of headlines. She is generating even more attention in the final sprint to Election Day – and so is her opponent, DFL businessman Jim Graves – as the national media shine a spotlight on Bachmann's tightest race yet.

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