Republican Karen Handel has built a slight lead over Democrat Jon Ossoff in a poll released Friday by WSB-TV in Georgia's nationally-watched 6th District runoff.
The poll, conducted by Landmark Communications, has Handel with a 49-46.5 percent advantage over Ossoff. That's within the 4 percent margin of error. Another 4.4 percent of voters are undecided.
Landmark Communications pollster Mark Rountree told WSB the findings shows Handel may be consolidating Republicans after bitter feuding between the 11 GOP candidates in the runup to the April 18 vote. It shows roughly 80 percent of Republicans back Handel.
“They’re now getting behind Handel in bigger numbers," Rountree said of Republicans. "And she has now taken the lead in the race. It’s a small lead, but she has taken a small lead."
There is cause for concern for Handel in the crosstabs, which show Ossoff has a 54-45 lead over Handel among female voters. It also finds that nearly 6 in 10 independents - a crucial voting bloc in Georgia that typically breaks for the GOP - backs Ossoff's campaign.
The poll surveyed 611 likely voters in the district, which spans from east Cobb to north DeKalb, and it's one of the first conducted since Handel and Ossoff landed in a June 20 runoff.
Read more about the poll here. See the crosstabs here:
More recent AJC coverage of the 6th District race: