The Republican candidates for Governor and U.S. Senate in Georgia are ahead, but neither is above the significant 50% mark needed to avoid a run-off. The Monmouth University Poll finds David Perdue leading Michelle Nunn by 8 points in the Senate contest and Nathan Deal leading Jason Carter by 6 points for Governor.
In the race for Georgia Governor, incumbent Nathan Deal holds a 48% to 42% lead over Democratic challenger Jason Carter. Libertarian Andrew Hunt has 5% of the vote and another 5% are undecided. Fully 91% of Republican voters support Deal and 88% of Democratic voters support Carter. Independents prefer Deal over Carter by 51% to 32%.
In the election for Georgia's open U.S. Senate seat, Republican David Perdue has the support of 49% of likely voters while Democrat Michelle Nunn has 41%. Libertarian candidate Amanda Swafford has 3% of the vote and another 7% of likely voters are undecided.
Fully 94% of Republican voters support Perdue and 90% of Democratic voters support Nunn. Independents prefer Perdue over Nunn 50% to 33%. There is almost no gender gap in this race. Perdue leads among men, 52% to 38%, and also has a slim edge among women, 47% to 43%.
Among the states with close U.S. Senate contests this year, Georgia may have the most racially diverse electorate, with 3-in-10 likely voters being black, Hispanic, Asian or native American. Among this group, Nunn has a substantial 75% to 14% lead. But among white likely voters in Georgia, Perdue has a similar 66% to 26% advantage.
"Perdue is clearly in the lead, but there is a sizable number of truly undecided voters in this race. If most of them swing to Nunn in the final days, a run-off is possible," said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute in West Long Branch, New Jersey.
About 1-in-5 likely voters in Monmouth's sample say they have already filled out their ballot during Georgia's early voting period. Among this group, Democrats actually have the lead. Nunn has a 57% to 42% early voter edge for U.S. Senate and Carter has a 58% to 39% early voter advantage for Governor. The republicans lead among those who have yet to vote - 51% to 37% for Perdue in the Senate race and an identical 51% to 37% for Deal in the Governor contest.
Interestingly, when asked which candidate they feel is honest and trustworthy, Nunn (30%) just edges out Perdue (24%). Another 10% say both candidates are honest and trustworthy and 28% say that neither one is. Among undecided voters, fully half (50%) say that neither Nunn nor Perdue is trustworthy.
Georgia voters prefer to see the Republicans (45%) rather than the Democrats (33%) in control of the U.S. Senate, while 21% say party control makes no difference to them. These voters hold a negative opinion of Barack Obama, with just 38% who approve of the job he is doing as president and 56% who disapprove.
The Monmouth University Poll was conducted by telephone from October 26 to 28, 2014 with 436 Georgia voters likely to vote in the November general election. This sample has a margin of error of ± 4.7 percent. The poll was conducted by the Monmouth University Polling Institute.
The questions referred to in this release are as follows:
1. If the election for U.S. Senate was today, would you vote for David Perdue the Republican or Michelle Nunn the Democrat, or Amanda Swafford the Libertarian? [PERDUE & NUNN WERE ROTATED] [IF UNDECIDED: If you had to vote for one of the following at this moment, do you lean more toward David Perdue or Michelle Nunn?]
2. If the election for Governor was today, would you vote for Nathan Deal the Republican or Jason Carter the Democrat, or Andrew Hunt the Libertarian? [DEAL & CARTER WERE ROTATED] [IF UNDECIDED: If you had to vote for one of the following at this moment, do you lean more toward Nathan Deal or Jason Carter?]
3. Do you approve or disapprove of the job Barack Obama is doing as president?
. Which party would you like to see control the U.S. Senate – the Republicans or the Democrats, or would it make no difference?
5. Which candidate for Senate is honest and trustworthy – David Perdue, Michelle Nunn, both of them, or neither of them?
The Monmouth University Poll was sponsored and conducted by the Monmouth University Polling Institute from October 26 to 28, 2014 with a statewide random sample of 436 likely Georgia voters drawn from a list of registered voters who voted in at least one of the last four general or primary elections and indicate they are likely to vote in the upcoming election. This includes 345 contacted by a live interviewer on a landline telephone and 91 contacted by a live interviewer on a cell phone. Monmouth is responsible for all aspects of the survey design, data weighting and analysis. Final sample is weighted for region, age, gender, and party registration based on state registration list information on the pool of voters who participated in recent midterm elections. Data collection support provided by Braun Research (field) and L2 and Aristotle (voter list). For results based on the total sample, one can say with 95% confidence that the error attributable to sampling has a maximum margin of plus or minus 4.7 percentage points. Sampling error can be larger for sub-groups (see table below). In addition to sampling error, one should bear in mind that question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of opinion polls.
Click on pdf file link below for full methodology and results by key demographic groups.
Download this Poll Report with all tables