Popular Republican governor John Hoeven was heavily recruited by prominent national Republicans, including Karl Rove and Dick Cheney to run against Conrad. SurveyUSA polls showed that both Conrad and Hoeven had among the highest approval ratings of any Senators and governors in the nation. A poll conducted by PMR (8/26-9/3 MoE 3.9) for The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead had as result for a hypothetical matchup: Hoeven-35%, Conrad-27%, Uncommitted-38%. This poll showed voter conflict between two very popular politicians in a small state where party loyalty is often trumped by personality. In late September 2005, Hoeven formally declined .