Friday, October 21, 2016

Latest UH poll has Clinton, Ogg building momentum

The blue wave is gathering strength.

A survey released (October 20) by the University of Houston Hobby School of Public Affairs illustrates Harris County’s continuing move toward the Democratic Party, with Democrat Hillary Clinton beating Republican Donald Trump by seven points and several high-profile down-ballot Democratic candidates showing similar momentum.

Clinton received support from 43 percent of Harris County voters who said they are certain or very likely to vote, compared to 36 percent for Trump. If those numbers hold, they would mark a far higher margin of victory for Clinton in Texas’ largest county than that for Barack Obama, who beat Republican John McCain by 1.63 percent in Harris County in 2008 and Mitt Romney by less than 1 percent in 2012.

Gary Johnson gets 6%, Jill Stein has 1%, and 15% are 'undecided', 'none of the listed candidates', or declined to answer.  Not wild about this poll or its mostly undisclosed demographics, but the results don't feel particularly wrong to me, save the high number of undecideds for a "certain to vote/likely to vote" screen.   For example, look at these:

  • Among Republican voters, 4 percent are voting for Clinton while 1 percent of Democratic voters are voting for Trump.
  • Ten percent of Democrats are undecided about who to vote for in November’s presidential contest. Only 6 percent of Republicans are undecided. 
  • Almost a third (31 percent) of all independents are undecided about who they will vote for in the presidential contest.
  • Third party candidate Johnson is receiving 18 percent of the independent vote.
  • Among independents, Clinton leads Trump 32 percent to 14 percent. 
  • Forty-three percent of Johnson’s supporters identify themselves as ‘leaning Republicans.’

But the screwiest part includes this item:

  • Males support Clinton's candidacy over Trump by 39% to 38%

Really?!  Some ethnicity was oversampled (and it wasn't white men over the age of 50).

In the race for Harris County District Attorney, Democratic challenger Kim Ogg leads incumbent Republican Devon Anderson by 7 points, 40 percent to 33 percent. Incumbent Republican Sheriff Ron Hickman is in a statistical tie with Democratic challenger Ed Gonzalez, with Hickman ahead by 1 point, 37 percent to 36 percent.

The latest survey appears to show a decided shift toward the Democratic Party in Harris County over the past four weeks, when an earlier Hobby School survey showed district attorney candidates Anderson and Ogg in a virtual tie, 30 percent to 29 percent, and Hickman beating Gonzalez 36 percent to 30 percent. Because the wording of questions on the two surveys was not identical, Hobby School officials said it is difficult to draw direct comparisons.

Gonzalez is the last candidate I would have thought would need to come from behind, but it looks as if he's doing exactly that.  I think these results bode well for other county executive races, like Vince Ryan's and Ann Harris Bennett's, and certainly the Democratic judicials.  Since early voting begins on Monday and so many folks that I know are ready to get it over with, it's going to be interesting to see how the EV totals match up with Election Day.  (That's what we have Charles for, thankfully.)  One last thing to note about this poll.

A Hobby School statewide survey released Tuesday found that Trump leads Clinton by only 3 percentage points in Texas, equal to the margin of error.

I just don't think it's going to be that close.  More like Trump by six or seven points, almost certainly less than ten, but not three or even four.  Who among you reading this is waiting until the last minute to decide?  Who's holding out until November 8 just in case there's an October (or November) surprise?  Let's hear from you in the comments.

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