The GQR survey research firm ran a poll of the open 1st District Democratic primary (5/6-8; 407 NC-1 likely Democratic primary voters) and find state Sen. Don Davis (D-Snow Hill) leading former state Senator and 2020 US Senate candidate Erica Smith, 44-31%, as the candidates make their final pitch before Tuesday’s primary election.
The Republican oriented Congressional Leadership Fund, loosely associated with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), is actively running ads against GOP candidate Sandy Smith, the 2020 CD-1 nominee who held incumbent Rep. G.K. Butterfield (D-Wilson) to a 54-46% re-election victory.
The CLF does not indicate support for another candidate, but former Rocky Mount Mayor Sandy Roberson appears to be Ms. Smith’s strongest competitor. The move is curious in that the ads lay out personal negatives against Ms. Smith that could be used against her in the general election should she win the GOP nomination. The new 1st, that the state Supreme Court drafted, is rated D+5 thus suggesting a competitive general election.
Survey USA polling for KOB-TV in Albuquerque (4/29-5/7; 1,389 NM likely general election voters; interactive voice response system and online) tested the upcoming Governor’s race and finds 2020 US Senate Republican nominee and former television weatherman Mark Ronchetti pulling to within the margin of polling error against Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D).
The ballot test breaks 47-43% in favor of the incumbent. More troubling for Gov. Lujan Grisham, however, is her results against the entire Republican field. Paired individually with each of five candidates, Gov. Lujan Grisham, though leading in every case, fails to reach 50% against any of her GOP opponents. The cumulative results portend a highly competitive November race.
Just days before Tuesday’s Pennsylvania primary, state Senate President Jake Corman has dropped his Republican gubernatorial bid and endorsed fellow contender Lou Barletta, the former Congressman and 2020 US Senate nominee. With Mr. Corman never able to increase his support from low single digits, his withdrawal is designed to help Mr. Barletta overcome the polling lead that state Sen. Doug Mastriano (D-Fayetteville) has established.
Pennsylvania Republican leaders are reportedly nervous that Sen. Mastriano, who was a legislative leader in attempting to determine if there was widespread fraud in the state during the 2020 election, would be unable to defeat Attorney General Josh Shapiro, who is the consensus Democratic gubernatorial nominee. It is likely that the Corman-Barletta move will prove too little, too late, however.
A CWS Research poll (5/4-10; 992 TX likely Republican primary runoff voters; interactive voice response system and text) reports that Attorney General Ken Paxton is substantially ahead of Land Commissioner George P. Bush, the son of former Florida Governor and 2016 presidential candidate Jeb Bush. The CWS results find AG Paxton holding a whopping 58-31% lead as the candidates move toward the state’s May 24th runoff election date. In the primary, Mr. Paxton garnered 42.7% of the vote, which is obviously short of the majority vote a candidate needs to win the nomination outright. In a field of four candidates, Mr. Bush finished second with 22.8%.
The Alaska Survey Research firm, headed by long time local pollster Ivan Moore, released their new special election US House study featuring 48 candidates. The survey (5/6-9; 605 AK-AL likely special election voters; online) finds former Governor and 2008 Vice Presidential Republican nominee Sarah Palin leading the huge field with 19%, followed closely by officially endorsed Republican Party candidate Nick Begich, III at 16%, with Independent and former 2020 Democratic US Senate nominee Al Gross and North Pole City Councilman Santa Claus (the former Thomas O’Connor) capturing the third and fourth qualifying positions with 13 and 6%, respectively.
Under the new Alaska election law, the top four finishers from the jungle primary, in this case scheduled for June 11th, will advance to the August 16th special general election. If no one receives majority support among the finishing four in the succeeding vote, the Ranked Choice Voting System takes effect. It is here where Ms. Palin may find trouble. Under this configuration, ASR projects that Mr. Claus would be first eliminated, then Ms Palin in the next round. A Begich-Gross final round would favor Mr. Begich at 53-47%.
Nick Begich, III is the grandson of former US Rep. Nick Begich (D), who died in a plane crash before the 1972 election. His uncle is former US Sen. Mark Begich (D). Nick Begich, III, however, is a Republican. ASR tested four different iterations with four separate fourth place contenders, and in each scenario Mr. Begich ultimately wins the seat.
Democratic pollster Change Research, polling for the left of center 314 Action group (5/6-10; 564 NE-2 general election voters of whom 94% say are definite or probable voters; online) finds Omaha Democratic state Senator Tony Vargas leading US Rep. Don Bacon (R-Papillion/Omaha), 42-39%, in a survey conducted just before the Nebraska primary.
The poll skews slightly left meaning that the race is likely no worse that tied from Rep. Bacon’s perspective. Approximately 25,000 more people voted in the NE-2 Republican primary than Democratic suggesting the enthusiasm level favors the GOP. The seat became three points more Republican in redistricting. Despite this particular poll result, Rep. Bacon is still favored for re-election.
A Florida state judge whom Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) appointed disqualified the new Florida congressional map ruling that the elimination of Rep. Al Lawson’s (D-Tallahassee) majority minority District 5 violates Florida’s Fair Districts Act. The state will clearly appeal, but the map’s fate, the Republicans’ best in the country, now is suspended in political limbo.
A Cygnal group poll for the Alabama Daily News and Gray Television (5/6-7; 600 AL likely Republican primary voters) two days ago covered the Alabama Senate race confirming that Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) is gaining on his two GOP opponents. Yesterday, Cygnal released its data on the state’s gubernatorial campaign. While Gov. Kay Ivey (R) still holds a comfortable lead, she has dropped to 40% support according to this survey.
Real Estate developer Tim James, son of former Governor Fob James, is second with 18%, and former US Ambassador to Slovenia Lindy Blanchard is a close third with 15%. Three more candidates divide 14% of the vote, while the remainder is recorded as undecided/won’t say. There is little doubt that Gov. Ivey will finish first, but the question remains whether she can attain the 50% threshold to avoid being forced into a secondary runoff election. The Alabama primary is May 24th. If a runoff becomes necessary, that election would occur on June 21st.
The media is leading with the point that former President Donald Trump’s Nebraska gubernatorial candidate, rancher and company CEO Chuck Herbster, lost his primary battle last night to rancher and University of Nebraska Regent Jim Pillen. The fact that eight women, including a state Senator, accused Mr. Herbster of sexual harassment long after the Trump endorsement was announced likely was the more critical factor in how the race ended.
For his part, Mr. Pillen had the support of term-limited Gov. Pete Ricketts, former US Congressman and ex-University of Nebraska championship head football coach Tom Osborne, former Gov. Kay Orr, the Nebraska Farm Bureau, and Americans for Prosperity, thus demonstrating a wide range of conservative and institutional backers.
Mr. Pillen defeated Mr. Herbster and Omaha state Sen. Brett Lindstrom in a close 33-30-26% result to claim the Republican nomination. He will be a heavy favorite in November against the new Democratic nominee, Bellevue state Sen. Carol Blood. Republican turnout was up approximately 53% when compared with the 2018 midterm election. Democrats also increased their participation rate but only in the 6% range.
In the first of potentially six incumbent paired contests of the 2022 post-redistricting election cycle, US Rep. Alex Mooney (R-Charles Town) scored a double-digit win over fellow Congressman David McKinley (R-Wheeling) last night. West Virginia lost one of its three seats in reapportionment, hence the reason for the two Republicans facing each other.
All of Rep. McKinley’s current district was contained in the new 2nd, but only half of Mr. Mooney’s territory. Former President Donald Trump backed Rep. Mooney after McKinley backed the Biden infrastructure package, which appeared to even the advantages. With polling correctly projecting a Mooney win, the four-term West Virginia Congressman who previously served in the Maryland state Senate recorded a convincing 54-36% victory.
The Rundown Blog
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