Archive for the ‘Texas Polls’ Category

AFTAH uses Penn State rape scandal as opportunity for anti-gay speech

Posted on: November 11th, 2011 by Sofia Resnick 7 Comments

The child molestation scandal at Penn State University has raised questions about the problems of idolizing successful college athletic programs to the point where university students feel justified in a violent demonstration in defense of a coach fired for keeping quiet about the alleged crimes of his former assistant coach, charged with sexually abusing eight boys in 15 years. (more…)

Unlike Bush in mid-1999, no runaway GOP leader right now (including Perry)

Posted on: June 23rd, 2011 by Patrick Brendel No Comments

A look at polling numbers illustrates how muddled the GOP presidential contest presently is, compared to the outlook at this point in the 2000 White House campaign, when then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush was already the clear frontrunner.

Current Texas Gov. Rick Perry may see the crowded field as evidence of a power vacuum in need of occupation. However, his own polling numbers aren’t so formidable right now, either — showing him to be on the same echelon as (or, if anything, slightly lower than) fellow Texan Ron Paul. This, of course, has the potential to change dramatically if Perry formally announces his candidacy and seriously pursues the GOP nomination.

In July 1999, Bush was the favorite of 59 percent of Republicans, according to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal survey (retrieved via At the time, U.S. Sen. John McCain’s support was at 3 percent, and it increased fairly steadily until March 2000, reaching 30 percent. Bush’s, meanwhile, stayed at around 60 percent, according to the series of surveys.

In January 1999, a Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll pegged Elizabeth Dole as Republicans’ top choice, getting 30 percent of the vote, compared to 18 percent for Bush, who hadn’t formed his campaign committee yet. A Gannet poll around the same time had Bush leading Dole 39-22 percent, though.

In June 1999, a Washington Post survey showed Bush leading the GOP field with 49 percent of the vote, Dole second with 20 percent, “undecided” at 7 percent, and then the rest. Dole would drop her campaign in the fall, giving McCain room to work his best efforts.

This year, nearly all of the latest polls show former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney as the GOP frontrunner, but with only about 25 percent of the Republican vote, according to an average of polls maintained by RealClearPolitics.

A new IBOPE Zogby/Newsmax poll purports to show that Minnesota U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann leapt ahead of Romney following the announcement of her candidacy and her exceeding of minimal expectations during the June 13 GOP presidential debate, according to the Christian Post. Bachman was the pick of 24 percent of survey respondents, followed by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (who adamantly says he’s not running) with 17 percent, Romney with 15 percent, Herman Cain with 15 percent and Texas U.S. Rep. Paul with 13 percent.

According to Newsmax, the survey also showed Christie trouncing Romney in a hypothetical head-to-head matchup, 62-19 percent, and Perry also easily beating Romney, 55-22 percent. While Christie is more popular than Romney among conservative and moderate Republicans, Perry is more popular than Romney among conservatives Republicans but less popular than Romney among moderate Republicans. Romney is most popular among liberal Republicans.

Aside from that piece of good news, however, Perry has generally been a nonfactor in national GOP presidential polls — much of that probably due to the fact that he’s not running yet and hasn’t usually been included in the polls.

According to the RealClearPolitics aggregation of polls, however, Perry has been an option in three of nine national surveys, and has an average support level of 5 percent. By comparison, fellow Texan Paul grabs 7 percent of the vote. Bachmann’s average support level is 6 percent — but the only poll taken after the GOP debate, by Rasmussen, showed her with 19 percent of the GOP vote (second to Romney’s 33 percent in that poll).

Meanwhile, a Dick Morris Poll conducted June 18-19 showed Romney leading the GOP field with 23 percent of the vote, followed by Bachmann and Paul, who each had 12 percent, then Perry, Cain and Newt Gingrich, each with 5 percent. According to theHouston Chronicle’s Texas on the Potomac blog:

“”Rick Perry shows weakness in the polling that might cause him to reconsider running for president,” Morris concluded. “As governor of Texas, he is already well known, particularly in the South. If he cannot produce more than a 5 percent vote share nationally or do better than 9 percent in his (home) region, he is not showing much strength.””

In opposition to the Zogby poll, the Dick Morris Poll showed that “The establishment Republicans who are Romney’s real first round opponents all do very poorly when measured against him,” according to Potomac.

According to Gallup — and in contrast to Zogby’s take — the June 13 GOP debate failed “to shake up” GOP candidates’ ratings among Republicans. Rather than asking respondents who their top candidate is, Gallup attempts to measure each candidate’s “Positivity Intensity Score” — the difference between the percentage of respondents with a strongly favorable opinion of the candidate, and those with a strongly unfavorable opinion of the candidate — together with each candidate’s level of recognition among respondents. (Perry’s not included in the Gallup series of polls.)

By Gallup’s metric, Sarah Palin, Romney and Bachmann are the only candidates with above-average ‘Positive Intensity Scores’ and above-average name-recognition.

While Cain’s ‘Positive Intensity Score’ has dipped in June, Bachmann’s rose, and Romney’s and Palin’s stayed level. Paul, meanwhile, has above-average name-recognition but a below-average ‘Positive Intensity Score,” putting him in company with Gingrich.

Ron Paul for U.S. Senate?

Posted on: January 19th, 2011 by Patrick Caldwell 7 Comments

Public Policy Polling has published a follow-up to their numbers released Tuesday that showed all Texas Republicans in a strong position to hold the seat now belonging to Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Tex.) when she retires in 2012. Wednesday, they detailed GOP voters’ preferences for the primary to replace Hutchison.

The candidate that pundits have bandied about as the front runner unsurprisingly finished first in the poll. Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst finished with 23-percent support in the poll. In their examination of potential general election match-ups, PPP showed that Dewhurst held the highest name recognition and had the widest margins over Democrats than the other three GOP candidates included.

The unexpected finisher among Republican voters was U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, who finished a close second behind Dewhurst with 21 percent. Paul has not indicated that he is contemplating a Senate run — instead he appears more likely to mount another presidential bid in 2012 — but he is a popular figure among Texas GOPers. Paul even finishes tied with Mitt Romney for fourth in the poll’s measure of 2012 Republican presidential contenders with 10 percent, only trailing Mike Huckabee, Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott is Texas Republicans’ third favorite option according to the poll, gathering 14 percent. None of the other possible candidates passed the double-digit margin, as U.S. Rep. Joe Barton placed fourth, with seven percent, ahead of other candidates — including former Railroad Commission Chair Michael Williams and former solicitor general Ted Cruz — who have already made it clear they intend to seek the nomination.

PPP surveyed 400 “usual Texas Republican primary voters” producing a +/-4.9 percent margin of error. The poll was conducted between Jan. 14-16, just days after Hutchison announced her intentions to retire from the U.S. Senate when her current term expires.

Republicans lead multiple match-ups for 2012 Texas Senate seat

Posted on: January 18th, 2011 by Patrick Caldwell 4 Comments

The candidates are just beginning to position themselves, but a new survey from Public Policy Polling indicates that no matter which Republican wins the party’s nomination to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison in 2012, the GOP is likely to maintain the seat.

A poll conducted between Jan. 14-16 examined four possible Republicans and three potential Democratic candidates, creating 12 different possible match-ups for the 2012 Senate race. In each instance, the Republican candidate won the outcome, and not just by a slim margin, but a double-digit advantage in every possible race.

The four Republicans included in the poll were: Lt. Gov David Dewhurst, Dallas mayor Tom Leppert and two members of the Texas Railroad Commission, Michael Williams and Elizabeth Ames Jones. On the Democratic side, PPP included former Comptroller John Sharp, former Rep. Chet Edwards and San Antonio Mayor Castro.

Dewhurst performs strongest of all potential candidates, beating Sharp by 18 points, Edwards by 19 percent and Julian Castro by a dominating 28-percent margin.

But as PPP’s Tom Jensen notes, it is still very early in the campaign, with all of the possible candidates holding low name recognition among Texas voters:

Only Dewhurst, who 62% of voters have an opinion about, surpasses 50% in name recognition. 54% of voters don’t know enough about Edwards to have formed an opinion about him and that rises steadily to 58% for Sharp, 63% for Leppert, 65% for Castro, and 72% for Williams and Jones. If there’s a ray of hope for Democrats it’s that they’ll get a candidate into the race who’s currently not very well known but who really catches fire and somehow proves to be more appealing to voters than the eventual Republican nominee.

PPP: Perry’s net approval rating much lower than Cornyn’s, Hutchison’s

Posted on: December 31st, 2010 by Patrick Brendel No Comments

With the spring primary season dissolved into a distant memory, U.S. Sens. John Cornyn and Kay Bailey Hutchison have much better net approval ratings than Gov. Rick Perry, who trounced Hutchison and Democrat Bill White to secure another term as Texas’ chief executive.

According to a pair of reports from Public Policy Polling, Cornyn’s approval/disapproval rating of 46/31 is the best among the trio, with Hutchison’s at 45/33 and Perry’s at 45/45. (Perry defeated Hutchison by 21 percentage points in March and received 55 percent of the vote in November).

While tea party favorite Perry’s name has popped up as a possible 2012 White House contender (despite his insistences to the contrary), Hutchison is being targeted by tea party leaders in the 2012 GOP Primary if she decides to seek re-election.

Cornyn’s net approval rating of +15 is the 10th best among 59 senators rated by the firm, while Hutchison’s rating of +12 is tied for 15th (with Louisiana’s David Vitter and New Mexico’s Tom Udall).

Perry’s net approval rating of 0 is 13th best among 30 governors rated by the firm (tied with Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick). Florida Gov. Charlie Crist has a net approval rating of +11, while California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has the worst rating on the list, at -38. New York Gov. David Paterson’s rating is -25.

According to the pollsters, the average rating for U.S. Senators is 43/40, while the average rating for governors is 42/45. There was very little difference in average ratings for Republicans and Democrats.

The ratings were calculated using survey results from the second half of 2010, usually according to the firm’s most recent polling — except where the firm polled repeatedly in October, then the numbers closest to election results were used.

Professor: Choice between teaching and research a ‘false dichotomy’

Posted on: December 9th, 2010 by Mary Tuma 1 Comment

Image by: Matt MahurinTexas voters believe the state’s colleges and universities can improve teaching while reducing operating costs, according to a poll released this week by conservative think tank The Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF). Given the choice between teaching students and conducting research, nearly 90 percent of survey respondents said the main purpose of universities should be to teach. (more…)

TX: U.S. Rep. Ron Paul gets 5 percent in poll of 2012 GOP presidential hopefuls

Posted on: November 8th, 2010 by Patrick Brendel No Comments

One Texan made the list of possible 2012 GOP presidential candidates in a recent survey by national polling firm Rasmussen Reports. But it’s not newly re-elected Gov. Rick Perry.

U.S. Rep. Ron Paul (R-Clute) garnered 5 percent of the vote in a Rasmussen survey released last Thursday. Pollsters asked 1,000 likely GOP primary voters on Monday, Nov. 1, to pick among seven candidates. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney led the field with 20 percent, followed closely by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Plain, each with 19 percent.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich took 13 percent; Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty earned 6 percent; and, Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels was picked by 3 percent of respondents. Another 7 percent said ‘somebody else’ and 8 percent were undecided.

During his 2008 presidential run, Paul didn’t win any states’ GOP primaries, but he did finish second or third in 27 states. Paul earned 4.9 percent of the primary vote in Texas. Paul ran for president in 1988 as a Libertarian, drawing 0.5 percent of the national popular vote.

In Texas and during his East Coast media tour to promote his book Fed Up!, Gov. Perry has denied that he is currently running for president. That hasn’t stopped observers from speculating that Perry may be positioning himself for a 2010 White House run.

Paul also has a new book coming out soon, called Liberty Defined, which is being promoted as a guide to Paul’s stances on 50 important issues. The book is due out April 2011, according to Paul’s last book, called End the Fed, was released in September 2009.

After the GOP’s takeover of the U.S. House, Paul is slated to chair the monetary policy subcommittee, in charge of Federal Reserve oversight.

Paul has been coy about a possible 2012 bid for the presidency, but hasn’t denied rumors that he might run again.

(Photo: Flickr Creative Commons/dfred)

TX: End of campaign polls show solid lead for Perry

Posted on: October 29th, 2010 by Patrick Caldwell 1 Comment

Two new polls show Gov. Rick Perry ahead by a significant margin in the Texas gubernatorial race. In Public Policy Polling’s (PPP) last survey of the race this cycle, Perry trumps Democrat Bill White 53-44 percent, and in a poll from five state newspapers, the incumbent leads 49-37 percent. (more…)