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Paul has narrow lead in KY-SEN

Kentucky Senate GOP candidate Rand Paul may have recently been the butt of bong jokes aplenty in the national press, but so far he’s maintaining a lead - albeit a narrow one - with likely voters in the November general election race against state attorney general Jack Conway.

A new Reuters/Ipsos poll of likely voters shows Paul leading 45 percent to Conway’s 40. (Among registered voters, it’s a dead heat, 40-40 percent.)

Paul has recently received national media attention for a (partially debunked) GQ story involving marijuana use and “kidnapping” -- and he’s also taken hits in the local press, most recently for mistakenly suggesting that church parishioners had thrown beer on him.

But the stories don’t appear to be sticking at home. More than half of Kentucky voters said that they had not heard about the college-days prank, in which Paul allegedly tried to force a female friend to smoke marijuana and worship a mythical deity named “Aqua Buddha.” Of those that had heard about the story, less than a third believed the anonymous accuser's account to be true or mostly true.

The Ipsos poll of 600 registered voters had a margin of error of plus-or-minus 4 percentage points.