Public Policy Polling led the way Tuesday with its results. It surveyed 601 registered voters 7/11-7/14 and has a margin of error of +/-4.0%. The toplines:
- Gov: McAuliffe 41%, Cuccinelli 37%, Sarvis 7%. Key quote: “… more Democrats have an opinion on Cuccinelli than they do about their own nominee.”
- LG: Northam 42%, Jackson 35%. Key quote: “28% of Virginia voters have an unfavorable rating of Jackson … compared to just 15% with a favorable opinion.”
- AG: Herring 38%, Obenshain 36%. Key quote: “The Attorney General race is looking to be the tightest of the year”
- Marriage equality: Not polled
Next up was the Roanoke College poll. It surveyed 525 registered voters 7/8-7/14 and has a margin of error of +/-4.3%.
- Gov: McAuliffe 31%, Cuccinelli 37%, Sarvis 5%. Key quote: “Almost two-thirds (62%) of registered voters said they have thought only a little or not at all about the gubernatorial campaign thus far.”
- LG: Northam 30%, Jackson 28%.
- AG: Herring 29%, Obenshain 33%.
- Marriage equality: Favor 45%, Oppose 43%
This morning, we have the Quinnipiac University poll. It surveyed 1,030 registered voters 7/11-7/15 and has a margin of error of +/-3.1%.
- Gov: McAuliffe 43%, Cuccinelli 39%, Sarvis N/A (not included). Key quote: “With such a large segment of the electorate unfamiliar with either candidate, there is a lot of movement possible, in either direction, before Election Day.
- LG & AG: Only asked favorable/unfavorable opinions of the candidates. The third option, “haven’t heard enough” to have an opinion was, by far, the option taken by most of the survey respondents. For LG: Northam: 7% F, 3% U, 90% H. Jackson: 7% F, 12% U, 81% H. For AG: Herring: 9% F, 3% U, 88% H. Obenshain: 9% F, 5% U, 85% H. Key quote: “Unknown doesn’t come close to describing just how anonymous the candidates for lieutenant governor and attorney general are to the citizenry that will elect two of them in three and a half months.”
- Marriage equality: Favor 50%, Oppose 43%
The top of the ticket always gets the most exposure and this year is no different. Remember: these polls are of registered voters, not likely voters. A shift to the latter model will occur as we get closer to election day. Even so, Virginia voters have not tuned in to an election which will be held in November. What in the heck are people paying attention to? The mess in Washington? And who are those 22% in the Quinnipiac poll who have heard nothing of the McDonnell scandal? Are they really registered to vote in VA?
The inclusion of the marriage equality question in two of the three polls is interesting – and not only because almost all of the survey respondents had an opinion on that. (Guess I answered my own question as to what they have been paying attention to.) No doubt this is in response to the DOMA decision coupled with the announcement that the ACLU of Virginia intends to file suit against the commonwealth. I hope all of the pollsters keep this question in their polls from here on out.
One other request: Roanoke College needs to do crosstabs. We need to see the demographic breakdowns behind the overall numbers.