Last Updated on September 25, 2022
Incumbent Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) currently trails Adam Laxalt by four percentage points, according to a new poll conducted by Trafalgar Group. The seat is widely considered one of the more vulnerable Democrat Senate holdings this cycle and could prove crucial to whichever party ends up with control of the chamber in November.
Trafalgar’s latest poll was conducted among likely voters from September 17 through September 20. Of 1,086 respondents, Laxalt garnered 47 percent of the vote to Cortez Masto’s 43 percent. The poll — which had a margin of error of 2.9 percent — found that an additional 4.5 percent of voters remain undecided.
Laxalt — who received an endorsement from President Trump during his primary race earlier this year — previously served as the state’s attorney general from 2015 through 2019. The Republican challenger has linked Cortez Masto with President Biden’s poor approval rating. According to a poll conducted this past June, 60% of Nevada voters disapprove of the president’s performance while a further 10% neither approve nor disapprove.
Biden’s low approval rating in Nevada has perhaps been verified by Cortez Masto’s reluctance to campaign with him, pundits have speculated. Cortez Masto — who was once considered a potential VP pick to pair with Biden — has yet to campaign with the president and has refused to answer when asked if she wishes to.
“Sen. Masto, will you campaign with Biden this fall?” a woman asked Cortez Masto at a Las Vegas on August 12. “Will you campaign with Biden this fall?” the woman continued before being cut off by a person who appeared to be a campaign aide. “Will you please answer for your constituents?” she asked again.
Laxalt has drawn attention to the senator’s numerous links and past endorsements of the president, however. In addition to campaigning with Biden in 2020 and being on the shortlist for VP, Cortez Masto’s family has done business with the Biden family as recently as 2020.
According to a report from Breitbart News, a security firm owned by the senator’s husband, Paul Masto, received payment for “security” from the Biden campaign in 2020. Paul Masto also referred to Hunter Biden as a “buddy” in an email uncovered from the latter’s laptop.
“[email protected]’s husband would solicit work from his “buddy” Hunter Biden to provide security for the Biden campaign,” Laxalt wrote in tweet last week. “She might be trying to shy away from the Biden family in an election year but make no mistake, her family has a long history with them.”
.@CortezMasto’s husband would solicit work from his “buddy” Hunter Biden to provide security for the Biden campaign.
She might be trying to shy away from the Biden family in an election year but make no mistake, her family has a long history with them.https://t.co/JoF7V0yGU1
— Adam Paul Laxalt (@AdamLaxalt) September 23, 2022
RealClearPolitics (RCP) classifies the Nevada U.S. Senate race a “toss-up” rating and lists its projection as a “GOP Pickup.” The RCP polling average has Laxalt ahead by 1.3 percentage points.