Democrat Heidi Heitkamp has a miniscule lead over Republican Rick Berg in the Senate race to replace retiring Democrat Kent Conrad. According to Mason-Dixon Polling Group, 47 percent of registered voters support former state attorney general Heitkamp and 46 percent support Berg, the state's lone member House of Representatives. Berg faces a challenge in the Republican primary on June 12 from Duane Sand, a conservative activist.
A poll taken at the beginning of May showed Berg with a seven-point lead over Heitkamp.
While Conrad's retirement from the Senate made the seat a likely pick-up in Republican-leaning North Dakota, Heitkamp's entry rendered the race competitive, due undoubtedly to the Democrat's perceived moderation in the mold of Conrad. In fact, in a recent interview with the Hill, Heitkamp hedged on the question of whether she would support Harry Reid as majority leader in the Senate, though a spokesman later clarified that she would support Reid. Heitkamp has also said President Barack Obama has "failed in the one test America had for him, which was to unite the country."