ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – No tax returns, no debate. That’s the latest from Democrat Chris Koster’s campaign when asked if there’s any progress on getting a debate set up with Republican gubernatorial rival Eric Greitens.

If the latest Missouri polls are any indication, Koster would be better off without debating Greitens. The Missouri Times poll this week found Koster leading Grietens 48 percent to 42, with only five percent still undecided.

Missouri Times publisher Scott Faughn says “Greitens is always going to do well when [Donald] Trump does well. This week…we saw Trump stumbling and we saw Koster’s lead grow a little bit.”

Since Koster is in the lead, Washington University political science professor Steven Smith says he’s likely avoiding a debate.

“Every candidates whose in a lead would probably prefer to avoid a debate. They’ve only have something to lose,” he says.

Smith adds Koster might be putting pressure on Greitens to make concessions as a condition for the debate. He says the gubernatorial candidates can probably get away with this because other races, like the presidential race, is grabbing much of the election attention.

Unlike the presidential run where there’s a long tradition of three debates, there’s no such precedent for gubernatorial races.

(TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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