Countering Rep. Evan Jenkins’ (R-Huntington) polling release that showed him leading the Republican primary race for the right to challenge Sen. Joe Manchin (D), Attorney General Patrick Morrisey (R) just went public with his own internal poll that shows very different results. According to his Osage Research survey (3/13; 500 WV likely Republican primary voters), it is Mr. Morrisey who has climbed into first place, leading former Massey Energy CEO Don Blankenship and Rep. Jenkins, 24-23-17%. At the beginning of last week, Mr. Jenkins released his Harper Polling survey that found him leading with 29% support versus 27 for Mr. Blankenship, and 19% for Attorney General Morrisey.
Mr. Blankenship, recently released from prison after being convicted of mine safety violations that helped lead to the deaths of 29 individuals in a mine disaster back in 2010, has been advertising heavily in the state. The early campaign spending largely accounts for his strong standing in both polls despite his negative personal situation. The Republican primary is May 8th and expects to become a testy affair.
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