New Democratic Primary Poll Shows McAuliffe Still in the Lead


New polling data shows former Governor Terry McAuliffe in the lead with 42 percent, while his closest opponents, Jennifer Carroll Foy and Senator Jennifer McClellan (D-Richmond) both had 8 percent support, while 29 percent of voters remain undecided.  Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax and Delegate Lee Carter (D-Manasses) came in with seven percent and four percent respectively, placing all the candidates except McAuliffe within range of each other, given the 4.3 percent margin of error. Public Policy Polling conducted the interviews of 526  likely Democratic primary voters on April 12 and 13.

“McAuliffe’s lead is pretty broad across different demographic groups. He leads with 45 percent among African Americans and 42 percent with white voters as well. He has commanding leads in each of the state’s major media markets as well, coming in at 49 percent in Norfolk, 42 percent in Washington, and 37 percent in both Richmond and Roanoke,” an accompany PPP press release states.

McAuliffe and Fairfax lead in terms of name recognition. However, Fairfax is relatively unpopular, with only a 26 percent favorable score, 25 percent unfavorable, and 49 percent not sure. For comparison, McAuliffe has 59 percent favorable, nine percent unfavorable, and 32 percent unsure.

“None of the sitting legislators running are very well known yet. McClellan has 28 percent name recognition, Foy’s is 23 percent, and Carter’s is 16 percent. Their hope will have to be that they can cut into McAuliffe’s advantage as voters become more familiar with them,” PPP analysis states.

Absentee voting for the Democratic primary begins April 24, with the final day of voting on June 8.

“There is plenty of time left for things to change in the state of the primary race,” the release states. “But none of the McAuliffe alternatives are getting any traction yet or setting themselves apart from the rest of the field to turn it into more of a one on one type race where he might be more vulnerable.”

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Eric Burk is a reporter at The Virginia Star and the Star News Digital Network.  Email tips to [email protected]
Background Photo “Virginia Capitol” by Mike Fonseca CC2.0

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