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The Republican (Civitas) poll says Pat McCrory leads Walter Dalton 47-37. The Democratic (N.C. Citizens for Progress) poll says McCrory’s lead, once 12 points, has been cut in half – from 46-34 in April to 45-39 in July.
So what does this really tell us?
First, McCrory’s five-year campaign has given him an edge. Second, the race conforms to the inelastic contours of North Carolina’s split electorate. Third, nobody really knows these guys yet. And, fourth, McCrory still leads in the other number that counts: cash.
According to the Democratic poll, by Garin-Hart-Yang, “(McCrory’s) drop is due largely to the TV ads raising questions about his special interest connections and failure to release his taxes that would shed light on which interests he has actually worked for. This means Walter Dalton is now well within striking distance.”
The other side has its spin:  “Any one poll is a snapshot of voter sentiment,” said Francis De Luca, Civitas president. “More important are the trends over time, and those trends show McCrory maintaining a significant lead.”
So both agree McCrory is ahead. But the Democratic poll sees hope: “…our survey finds that Barack Obama holds a 46% to 44% advantage over Mitt Romney, and in a VERY positive sign for Dalton, undecided voters in the governor’s race prefer Obama by a two to one margin.”
In other words, the Democratic vote is eventually going to coalesce for Dalton, making it essentially a tie. Which, of course, makes sense in a state where some 90-plus percent of the voters already know how they are going to vote in November.
The race comes down to which candidate does a better job of defining himself and the other guy. That is, who has the best TV. And the most.
Right now, it looks like McCrory will have the most money to spend. That’s the (multi) million-dollar elephant in this room.


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2 comments on “Dueling Polls

  1. Carbine says:

    Civitas polling has an excellent track record in this state. They are much better at drilling down to actual voters than any other outfit I know of. The polls have been so consistent for so long, I don’t see Dalton having a very realistic chance. McCrory would really have to screw up big-time to lose this.

  2. dap916 says:

    With registered democrats outnumbering registered republicans, this election truly depends a great deal on “turnout”. I agree with you, Gary. Pretty much everyone has already decided who they want to become our next governor. And, I believe that’s McCrory (being the wide-eyed, radical republican that I am :-). If the Obama forces can rally the troops here in God’s Country, McCrory will have a tougher battle on his hands than if that doesn’t transpire.

    I’ve seen some absolutely amazing efforts by republican leaders in some of the counties I’ve visited recently. They are getting “down and dirty” with grassroots efforts and there is a very real interest this year within the North Carolina republican voting contingent.

    Sure, having the money to put out your message means a lot and even though democrats are demonizing McCrory for getting the contributions he’s getting, that’s part of the equation when running for office. If you can’t garner up financial support…don’t run, end of story.

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