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New Poll: If Wendy Davis is to Win, Battleground Texas and Democrats Must Change Texas Turnout


by: Joseph Vogas

Tue Apr 15, 2014 at 03:00 PM CDT



Poll results show the need for Democratic voter mobilization
Today, Public Policy Polling released the first part of their poll on the Texas electorate. The polling firm tested four statewide races for the fall general election and found Democrats trailing by double digits in all five match-ups. For Governor, Greg Abbott is leading Sen. Wendy Davis 51-37, Sen. John Cornyn leads David Alameel 49-32 for US Senate, Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst leads Leticia Van de Putte 50-32 while Dan Patrick would lead 51-35 in the same race, and George P. Bush leads John Cook 50-32 for Texas Land Commissioner.

These numbers delineate the challenges facing Democrats as we work to mobilize new voters and bring out our base.

In the cross tabs, one can see that Sen. Davis is handily winning liberals and moderates. However, the state's conservative base is holding as a solid bloc. A bigger problem is that Democratic voters are not familiar with our candidates and are unsure who they will be supporting, while the Republicans already know they like other Republicans, dislike the Democrats, and will vote for the Republicans. No party has an advantage with Independents, who are also the most undecided.

I'll dive into what are the positive and negative takeaways of this poll, show what can be done for Texas Democrats to improve on because of this data, and provide the full polling memo after the jump.

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With this electoral model, Sen. Davis may perform just as well as President Obama or Houston Mayor Bill White did in previous years once the undecideds decide who they are supporting.

This is why Battleground Texas and a reinvigorated Democratic Party is so important to Texas.

The current electorate's poor turnout will not provide a path to victory for Sen. Davis. n this poll, Hispanic's are projected to make up 18% of the voters, but they are closer to 36% of the eligible voting population. 50% of Hispanics are not familiar with Greg Abbott and are split evenly on Sen. Davis between favorable, unfavorable, and undecided. If the electorate can be changed so that Hispanic voter participation more closely resembles their share of the voting-eligible population, a path to victory should emerge for Davis and Democrats.

Battleground Texas is doing the necessary work to engage voters. This past weekend Battleground Texas volunteers knocked over 55,000 doors for Sen. Davis, more than the Republican party did in all of March.

The poll also indicates a need for Sen. Davis to continue communicating her own positive message, telling her inspirational life story, and advocating as to why she is the best choice for Texans.

When tested against Greg Abbott, Davis wins the 18-29 year old voters and performs 13 points better with women than men, but her personal favorability with both groups are underwater. Public education has long been the corner stone issue that has united Hispanics, youth, and women. Should Sen. Davis' message on education and how Greg Abbott's plan is more tests, she should see some noticeable improvements. Mainly, for her to be successful, Sen. Davis will need to expand the electorate, improve her favorables with young voters, minorities, and women, and communicate her positive message and agenda to Texas voters.

On the upside, Sen. John Cornyn has a net negative approval rating and is disliked by almost everyone; he will return to office simply by coasting on his partisan affiliation. Of the 20 possible cross-tabs, Cornyn led in only 4 of them including "Republicans," Romney Voters," and "Somewhat Conservative." The "Very Conservative" Texans do not approve of Cornyn.

Here are the questions from the PPP poll. We will have more analysis of the survey as additional results are released.

Q1 Do you approve or disapprove of President Barack Obama's job performance?
Approve .......................................................... 36%
Disapprove...................................................... 58%
Not sure ....................................................... 6%

Q2 Do you approve or disapprove of Governor Rick Perry's job performance?
Approve .......................................................... 48%
Disapprove...................................................... 44%
Not sure .......................................................... 9%

Q3 Do you have a favorable or unfavorable opinion of Greg Abbott?
Approve .......................................................... 40%
Disapprove...................................................... 27%
Not sure ....................................................... 33%

Favorable ........................................................ 40%
Unfavorable .................................................... 27%
Not sure .......................................................... 33%

Q4 Do you have a favorable or unfavorable opinion
of Wendy Davis?
Favorable ........................................................ 33%
Unfavorable .................................................... 47%
Not sure .......................................................... 21%

Q5 If the candidates for Governor this fall were Republican Greg Abbott and Democrat Wendy Davis, who would you vote for?
Greg Abbott .................................................... 51%
Wendy Davis.................................................... 37%
Not sure .......................................................... 13%

Q6 Do you approve or disapprove of Senator John
Cornyn's job performance?
Approve ......................................................... 31%
Disapprove..................................................... 40%
Not sure .........................................................30%

Q7 Do you have a favorable or unfavorable opinion of David Alameel?
Favorable ........................................................ 12%
Unfavorable .................................................... 21%
Not sure .......................................................... 67%

Q8 If the candidates for Senate this fall were Republican John Cornyn and Democrat David Alameel, who would you vote for?
John Cornyn ................................................... 49%
David Alameel.................................................32%
Not sure .......................................................... 20%

Q9 If the candidates for Lieutenant Governor this fall were Republican David Dewhurst and Democrat Leticia Van de Putte, who would you vote for?
David Dewhurst .............................................. 50%
Leticia Van de Putte..........................................32%
Not sure .......................................................... 17%

Q10 If the candidates for Lieutenant Governor this fall were Republican Dan Patrick and Democrat Leticia Van de Putte, who would you vote for?
Dan Patrick ..................................................... 51%
Leticia Van de Putte..........................................35%
Not sure .......................................................... 14%

Q11 If the candidates for state Land Commissioner this fall were Republican George P. Bush and Democrat John Cook, who would you vote for?
George P . Bush .............................................. 50%
John Cook....................................................... 32%
Not sure .......................................................... 18%

Q12 In the last presidential election, did you vote for Barack Obama or Mitt Romney?
Barack Obama................................................39%
Mitt Romney.................................................. 53%
Someone else / Don't remember .................... 8%

Q13 Would you describe yourself as very liberal, somewhat liberal, moderate, somewhat conservative, or very conservative?
Very liberal ......................................................8%
Somewhat liberal ............................................ 17%
Moderate......................................................... 23%
Somewhat conservative.................................. 29%
Very conservative ........................................... 23%

Q14 If you are a woman, press 1. If a man, press 2.
Woman ........................................................... 53%
Man................................................................. 47%

Q15 If you are a Democrat, press 1. If a Republican, press 2. If you are an independent or identify with another party, press 3.
Democrat ........................................................ 32%
Republican ...................................................... 44%
Independent / Other........................................24%

Q16 If you are Hispanic, press 1. If white, press 2. If African-American, press 3. If other, press 4.
Hispanic .......................................................... 18%
White .............................................................. 64%
African-American ............................................ 12%
Other............................................................... 6%

Q17 If you are 18 to 29 years old, press 1. If 30 to 45, press 2. If 46 to 65, press 3. If you are older than 65, press 4.
18 to 29........................................................... 12%
30 to 45........................................................... 20%
46 to 65........................................................... 43%
Older than 65 .................................................. 25%

Q18 Mode
Phone ............................................................. 80%
Internet ........................................................... 20%

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Hard to find much Hope in the poll (0.00 / 0)
given her negativity ratings.  The only thing I can see is that it was clearly a landline poll and it undercounts the premenopausal voters.

voter turnout (0.00 / 0)
From lower to higher income, 2/5 versus 4/5 people vote.

http://www.vox.com/2014/4/14/5...


If income and age are decisive (0.00 / 0)
She is going to have to become much more populist and less of a glass ceiling feminist.   Focus on things like college debt, toll roads, constant testing in the schools and regressive property taxes, instead of stuff like the paygap between management class women and management class men, neither of whom are likely to vote democrat.  Birth control availability was a good issue too, but she seems to be running away from it.  Remember many of shuttered clinics provided birth control access as well as abortion, and that access is gone many areas now.  

I know it might lose her support among Leanin and "Emily's List," corporate feminists.  I know they are ones currently donating, but she can always make up for it with small donations, from working class people, if she does it aggressively.   The leanin feminists aren't a big enough percentage of the population to make up for republican plutocrats donating the republicans anyway.  Their concerns really are nitch.  The paygap doesn't resonate with lower middle and working class women because they are not in management.   Choice issues don't resonate with management class women because they are not uninsured, or poor, and can get birth control and abortion, no matter what even if it is made unavailable locally.  

It is not that poor and middling women like the paygap it is just not high on the list of priorities.  They aren't going to earn more money even if the paygap is reduced.  So you do have to choose focus on stuff they care about.  Many glass ceiling types, are republican but on the issue of the paygap, and not very motivated, since even though they make less money then men in management, they are still pretty comfortable people.


[ Parent ]
PPP polling (0.00 / 0)
I took this poll.  They asked a lot of other questions and one was equal pay.But what I thought was totally unrelated to the poll was all of the questions at the end about pro-teams, and I assume basketball and baseball and also players - none of which I know anything about, or care, so I just pushed numbers.  I suspect that some people who do not care about politics did the same with those questions.  Friends that are intelligent and are not politicos do not know who is running - it's APRIL and they do not pay any attention until Labor Day.
I know that Battleground is working, but they need to work in areas like Waco, Bell County, and those of that size that are purple - also in East Texas.  Every vote counts, although there are not many people there - work those areas!  

More will be coming later in the week (0.00 / 0)
Also, I am THRILLED they asked about basketball players. I asked that information be included and I'm glad to know it is!

[ Parent ]
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