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A poll commissioned by Democrat Mike Espy’s U.S. Senate campaign shows him leading Republicans Cindy Hyde-Smith and Chris McDaniel in a three-way race as the two Republicans split votes.

The poll was taken by Chism Strategies in the days after Gov. Phil Bryant announced his appointment of Hyde-Smith to temporarily fill the seat until a Nov. 6 special election.

The special election will be a general election — no party primaries — and is likely to result as no candidate is expected to get more than 50 percent of the vote.

The poll was taken before Democratic Tupelo Mayor Jason Shelton announced his candidacy, which could siphon votes from Espy, and…