Research 2000 is a reputable national polling firm. That said, the result is definitely an outlier. The latest UT/Tribune poll, for example, has Perry and Hutchison leading White by identical nine-point margins, 44-35 in Perry’s case and 43-34 in Hutchison’s. This margin is a little higher than the presumed R vs. D self-identification that is in the 5 to 7 point range, but the difference can be accounted for by White’s lower name identification. In other words, polling at this stage of a major race is little more than a generic ballot test. We can anticipate that Perry will try to tie White to Obama and the national Democrats, we can assume that he will raise the issue of Houston’s fiscal condition and compare it unfavorably with the state’s, and on the other side, White will have a cornucopia of issues from Perry’s years in public office. These issues did not resonate with Republican primary voters, but they may fare much better with general election voters. Research 2000 had White ahead among independent voters, 45% to 42%. The numbers: (all voters) Perry 46% White 42% (independent votersw) White 45% Perry 42% The poll surveyed 600 likely voters in state elections and had a margin of error of 4%.
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