Most of Arizona’s statewide races look like toss-ups, according to polls

Oct 17, 2022, 2:00 PM | Updated: 2:02 pm

(Maricopa County Elections Website Screenshot)...

(Maricopa County Elections Website Screenshot)

(Maricopa County Elections Website Screenshot)

PHOENIX – If polling trends hold true, Arizonans should to expect to see multiple statewide races go down to the wire in the upcoming general election.

Treasurer is the only statewide down-ticket race with a clear-cut favorite in the Nov. 8 general election, according to findings released Monday by OH Predictive Insights (OHPI).

The secretary of state, attorney general and superintendent of public instruction contests were all close enough to be considered toss-ups.

The results came from polling of likely Arizona voters conducted Oct. 4-6. The margin of error for each race was plus or minus 3.77%.

Incumbent Republican Treasurer Kimberly Yee had a 46%-35% lead over Democratic challenger Martin Quezada, with 19% undecided.

GOP candidates also led the three other polls released Monday. However, the gaps were within the margin of error, and nearly 20% of voters remained undecided in each contest.

In the secretary of state race, Republican Mark Finchem led Democrat Adrian Fontes 43%-41%, with 17% undecided.

“Basically, it’s still a toss-up and it’s really going to come down to those 17% and how both respective campaigns do from now until Election Day of convincing middle-of-the-road voters and getting their base out,” Mike Noble, chief of research for Phoenix-based OHPI, told KTAR News 92.3 FM last week.

Of the races covered in Monday’s release, secretary of state is the only statewide contest OHPI had previously polled. A survey conducted Sept. 12-18 showed Finchem with a 40%-35% lead and 25% undecided.

The findings released Monday showed Democratic Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman in a tight race for reelection, with Republican Tom Horne holding a 42%-41% edge and 17% undecided.

“Again, very much a toss-up,” Noble said.

Republican Abraham Hamadeh had a slightly larger lead over Democrat Kris Mayes in the attorney general race, 42%-39%, but nearly 1 out of 5 voters were still undecided in that contest.

“That 19% that’s undecided is truly who is going to decide who the next attorney general is,” Noble said.

Last week, OHPI released its latest findings on Arizona’s high-profile governor and U.S. Senate races.

The governor’s contest was in toss-up territory, with Republican Kari Lake leading Democrat Katie Hobbs 47%-44% and 9% undecided.

Meanwhile, Democratic Sen. Mark Kelly had a comfortable 46%-33% lead over Republican challenger Blake Masters, with Libertarian Marc Victor pulling a surprisingly strong 15% and 7% undecided.

Single surveys aren’t necessarily the best gauge of how a race is trending, but treasurer, secretary of state, attorney general and superintendent of public instruction don’t get as much attention from pollsters as the contests at the top of the ticket.

Polling averages that compile findings from multiple pollsters are a good way to analyze overall trends.

Two national websites that track polls and publish updated averages — FiveThirtyEight and RealClearPolitics — showed Lake barely ahead by less than 1 percentage point as of Monday afternoon.

Those sites, which each have their own way of computing averages, also track Arizona’s U.S. Senate race. FiveThirtyEight showed Kelly ahead of Masters by 6.3 points as of Monday afternoon, and RealClearPolitics had the incumbent leading by 4.5 points.

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Most of Arizona’s statewide races look like toss-ups, according to polls