As the Quinnipiac poll shows Democrat Richard Blumenthal building a lead over Republican Linda McMahon, Rasmussen Reports today says their more recent polling finds the race tightening.

A Rasmussen survey taken after the third and final U.S. Senate debate found Blumenthal leading McMahon, 51 percent to 46 percent. His five-point lead is half the 11-point spread in Rasmussen’s previous poll 10 days ago.

Rasmussen’s latest poll was conducted Thursday and is based on a telephone survey of 750 likely voters. Its margin of error is plus or minus 4 percentage points, nearly covering Blumenthal’s lead.

The new poll prompted Rasmussen to reclassify the Connecticut races from “solid Democrat” to “leans Democrat.”

Quinnipiac University released a poll Thursday that was conducted earlier, from Oct. 7 to 11. It was based on a sample of 1,119 likely voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.9 percentage points.

In 13 surveys this year, Rasmussen has had the Democratic candidate with as little as 47 percent and as much as 60 percent of the vote. McMahon’s support has ranged from 31 percent to 46 percent.

Ed Patru, a spokesman for McMahon, downplayed the Quinnipiac survey, saying their internal polling shows a competitive race.

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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