Jerry Moran’s campaign released an internal poll yesterday that has him up 32 points over Tiahrt.
Key Findings, as stated by Public Opinion Strategies pollster Glen Bolger
1. Congressman Jerry Moran continues to enjoy a substantially stronger image than his opponent, Congressman Todd Tiahrt.
Congressman Jerry Moran has an image of 65% favorable/10% unfavorable, while his opponent, Congressman Todd Tiahrt, has an image of only 45% fav/26% unfav. This represents a five point drop in Tiahrt’s favorables and a fourteen point increase in his unfavorables since May (50% fav/12% unfav). In May, Moran had a 67% fav/7% unfav image, so Tiahrt’s sustained negative attacks have failed.
2. Moran has a commanding lead on the Republican primary ballot test, where he has a more than two-to-one advantage over Tiahrt.
Congressman Moran leads Congressman Tiahrt on the ballot 56% Moran/24% Tiahrt, with 4% voting for Robert Londerholm/Tom Little, and 15% undecided. Moran’s lead over Tiahrt is his largest of the campaign and is six points higher than his twenty-six point lead in May (53% Moran/27% Tiahrt).
3. Primary voters strongly believe Congressman Todd Tiahrt is running the more negative campaign.
Fully 44% of primary voters say Tiahrt is running a more negative campaign, with just 10% saying Moran has been more negative.
Public Opinion Strategies conducted a telephone survey among likely Republican primary voters in Kansas on July 11-13, 2010. The survey was completed among 450 likely Republican primary voters and has a margin of error of +4.6% in 95 out of 100 cases.
The poll drew a response from the Tiahrt campaign almost immediately.
“As a rule, we do not comment on polls, but this internal poll from the Moran campaign is about as bad as Congressman Moran’s record on taxes, immigration and national security,” said Michelle Schroeder, spokesperson for the Tiahrt campaign. “The more Kansans learn of Congressman Moran’s dismal record, the more overwhelming support Todd Tiahrt gains. And now that the news that Tom Tancredo has pulled his endorsement from Congressman Moran because of his dishonest representation of his record on the important issue of illegal immigration, Kansans will again see that Congressman Moran is willing to say and do anything to get elected.”
We’ve looked at internal polls, and as usual, they should be taken with a grain of salt, as we don’t know what questions were asked. Yes, Public Opinion Strategies is good and very respected. However, 32 points is a huge margin. SurveyUSA has the race at 20 points, and even that poll has many asking if Tiahrt supporters were undersampled. However, Moran has not polled below Tiahrt once in this race, and maintains a fundraising lead.
The geography of this race seems to change on a daily basis, with both campaigns having good and bad days. Ultimately, the only poll that counts in the one on election day, which is a short two and a half weeks away. A lot can happen in that space of time.