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NASHVILLE - Republican Scott DesJarlais' campaign says a poll it commissioned last month shows the Marion County physician in a statistical dead heat with U.S. Rep. Lincoln Davis, D-Tenn., in the 4th Congressional District contest.

The survey of 300 voters, conducted Aug. 10-12 by Public Opinion Strategies, found Davis, of Pall Mall, with a 45 percent to 41 percent lead over DesJarlais, who lives in Jasper, according to a poll memo released by the campaign. The telephone survey had a margin of error of plus or minus of 5.66 percent.

"This race is a toss-up," Public Opinion Strategies stated in the memo. "The desire for a change in Washington and a congressman who will serve as check and balance to President Obama and the Democrats in Congress, puts Lincoln Davis' re-election effort in a very precarious position."

But the Davis campaign countered that under the survey's margin of error, Davis' lead "could be as much as 10 percent rather than the 4 percent the poll showed."

Moreover, Davis officials said their own campaign's poll, conducted in late August, showed Davis' numbers "continue to remain stable" and that he had a "double-digit lead" over DesJarlais.

The campaign noted Davis was endorsed Monday by the American Farm Bureau and received it "Friend of the Farmer" award. He also has been endorsed by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Federation of Independent Business, the AFL-CIO, the National Rifle Association and the National Right to Life, the Davis campaign said.

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