PPP's final Missouri poll finds Claire McCaskill holding on to a narrow lead over Todd Akin, 48-44. Libertarian Jonathan Dine is polling at 6%. Since our last poll two weeks ago McCaskill's gained 2 points, while Akin's seen a 4 point increase in his support.
Akin's image isn't getting any better. He now has a 29% favorability rating with 56% of voters rating him unfavorably, the worst numbers we've found for him to date. Nevertheless Republicans are starting to unify around him a little bit more as the election approaches- he's gone from getting 74% of his party vote on our last poll to now 79%. He's also pulled even with independents at 46%, although he's still running 19 points behind Mitt Romney on that front.
Akin's chances at pulling off an upset comeback victory may depend on whether Dine really gets 6% at the polls on Tuesday. His voters support Mitt Romney 70/25 over Barack Obama and Dave Spence 61/34 over Jay Nixon, so clearly he's pulling from folks who otherwise would have voted Republican. The Dine voters hate Akin- only 12% see him favorably to 67% with a negative opinion. But they hate McCaskill too- only 8% approve of the job she's doing to 67% who disapprove. If they stay with Dine, McCaskill wins. If they decide the desire for a Republican Senate outweighs their disgust for Akin, then Akin has a chance.
This race has one of the biggest gender gaps we've seen all year, with McCaskill leading 55/38 among women while Akin has a 52/38 lead with men. McCaskill's lead is largely built on the fact that 91% of Democrats support her while only 79% of Republicans support Akin. Akin is up 51/43 with whites, while McCaskill leads 90/6 with African Americans.
The race for Governor doesn't look like it will be terribly competitive either. Democratic incumbent Jay Nixon leads Republican challenger Dave Spence 53-45. The race has tightened in the closing stretch but Nixon is still taking 14% of Republicans while losing only 4% of Democrats, and he has a 53/42 lead with independents. Nixon continues to be among the more popular Governors in the country with a 51/31 approval spread. Spence has come across well to voters over the course of the campaign- 38% rate him favorably to 28% with an unfavorable opinion. But even with 48 hours left to go, 34% of voters still don't have an opinion about him either way.
Full results here