Internal polling shows Democratic U.S Rep. Ron Klein, running for re-election in District 22, leading Republican Allen West.

The Miami Herald‘s Naked Politics blog reports:

Democratic U.S. Rep. Ron Klein released an internal poll today which showed he is ahead of his Republican opponent Allen West 48-40 percent. The poll states that since May West’s unfavorables have nearly tripled to 26 percent and he is far ahead among independents.

Klein is in a fierce battle with West in Congressional District 22 which spans parts of coastal and suburban Broward and Palm Beach counties.

Sun Sentinel political columnist Anthony Man writes that “the Klein campaign put the best possible spin on the limited results it released Wednesday afternoon.”

The campaign said the poll of 500 likely voters, conducted Sept. 14-16 by Anzalone Liszt Research has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points. What that means is the race is roughly even.

Klein defeated West in 2008, Man notes, but West raised little money and spent much of the campaign season working in Afghanistan as a military contractor. This time around, “the negative ads Klein has run against West are paying off,” but the latter has “raised enough money to run a competitive campaign”

Thus far, West has raised more than $4 million, compared to Klein’s $2.5 million, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

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