Poll: Even if Dems have midterm surge, GOP’s Ducey, Gaynor way ahead

Oct 5, 2018, 9:58 AM
Gov. Doug Ducey, left, and Steve Gaynor, the GOP candidate for Arizona Secretary of State (AP and F...
Gov. Doug Ducey, left, and Steve Gaynor, the GOP candidate for Arizona Secretary of State (AP and Facebook Photos)
(AP and Facebook Photos)

PHOENIX — Even if Arizona Democrats have a big turnout for the midterm election next month, the Republican candidates for the state’s top two offices have comfortable leads, according to a new poll.

Using a model that assumes a Democratic surge to the polls, Data Orbital found that Republican Gov. Doug Ducey holds a 15.7 percent lead over Democrat David Garcia. In the secretary of state race, Republican Steve Gaynor is ahead of Democrat Katie Hobbs by 7.2 percent.

Data Orbital, a Phoenix-based research firm, said the GOP had a 13-point ballot advantage (45 percent to 32 percent) at the 2014 midterm election. The pollster modeled its latest results as if the Republican turnout advantage was down to five points (39 percent to 34 percent).

In that scenario, Arizona voters favored Ducey over Garcia 50.7 percent to 35 percent, with 9.6 percent undecided.

The advantage for Gaynor, who defeated incumbent Michele Reagan in the GOP primary, over Hobbs was 39.7 percent to 32.5 percent, with 24.6 percent still undecided.

Secretary of state is first in the succession line to take over the state’s top position should the governor leave office.

The polling showed that 16.3 percent of Democrats favored Ducey, while Garcia’s crossover support from Republicans was only 4.7 percent. Additionally, Ducey had a 7-point lead among independents.

“It is also interesting to note that Democratic voters appear more likely than their Republican counterparts to cross over on these statewide races,” Data Orbital President George Khalef said in a press release.

“But with a month to go and many national political dynamics at play, turnout is going to continue to be the most important factor.”

The Republicans’ advantage in for the Nov. 6 election was even more stark when the results were modeled without assuming a Democratic surge.

In that case, Ducey had a lead of 18.5 points (52.1 percent to 33.6 percent), and Gaynor’s advantage was 10 points (41.2 percent to 31.2 percent).

The phone poll of 550 likely voters, 70 percent from land lines and 30 percent cellphones, was conducted Monday-Wednesday and had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.18 percent.

A month ago, a Data Orbital poll showed Ducey with a much more competitive 7-point lead over Garcia.

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Poll: Even if Dems have midterm surge, GOP’s Ducey, Gaynor way ahead