LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – There’s more than one kind of kickoff that happens on Labor Day.

“School is settled down, vacations are over, it’s the last holiday before election day, it’s crunch time for campaigns that last month,” University of Kentucky Associate Professor of Political Science, Dr. Stephen Voss told FOX 56.

Now is the time for political candidates to close the deal with voters and that means people may notice a bigger push for their vote, whether it be through campaign mail, or a last-minute October surprise.

“If they’re trailing and they know they’re trailing, we might start to see the campaigns get vicious,” Voss said.

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Voss explained that at this point in the campaign name recognition should be built. Now candidates have to shift to improving their image while dragging down their opponents. However, it’s often not the candidate that brings people to the polls. Voss said, on paper, that the election favors Republicans.

“Democrats in the White House, usually that’s good for Republicans. Democrats are in charge of the Congress, usually, that’s good for Republicans. The economy is not doing well with inflation off the charts, normally that would be good for Republicans, the party out of power,” Voss said.

However, Voss explained this likely won’t be a normal election following the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade.  

“People are heavily focused on abortion, Democrats who normally would be dispirited and sort of lazy because they already hold the national government are motivated in a way they normally wouldn’t be,” Voss said.

At the top of the ticket is a Senate battle between Sen. Rand Paul and challenger Charles Booker. Voss said what was once thought a sleepy race could end up being a lot closer

“They’re [Democrats] even starting to put money and attention into the long shot races like Kentucky, so Booker has already started to see some energy and some attention,” Voss said. By mid-October, Voss said the focus will turn to turnout with the assumption most votes are already locked in.

Election Day is Nov. 6.

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