The debates are over and all that's left are the final two weeks of the campaign in the Virginia gubernatorial race. And despite the fact that the polling in the race released in the last 24 hours has been all over the place, little has changed. Republican Bob McDonnell is still very much in control. It isn't a commanding lead -- well, unless you count the Survey USA poll -- but it is a comfortable, nearly double digit lead currently. Just like the debate tonight, then, there really is no shake up represented in these polls. Actually what we have are three polls: one high, one low and one in the middle. For my money, I'll take that Clarus Research Group poll out of the three. It is nestled in between two outliers and ends up being quite close to where FHQ has the race at the moment and where most of the recent polling has found the race.
|2009 Virginia Gubernatorial Race Polling|
|Poll||Date||Margin of Error||Sample||Deeds||McDonnell||Undecided|
|Survey USA||Oct. 17-19, 2009||+/- 4%||595 likely voters||40||59||1|
|Clarus Research Group [pdf]||Oct. 18-19, 2009||+/- 4%||575 likely voters||41||49||10|
|Christopher Newport University||Oct. 8-13, 2009||+/- 4%||506 likely voters||30.9||44.7||21.9|
Is it all over in the Old Dominion? Well, Deeds missed his best opportunity to shift the narrative of the race at this evening's debate and I'm hard-pressed to conjure up a scenario where the state senator pulls an election win out. We reached this point in the presidential campaign a year ago too. The talk shifted from who will win to how much Obama would win by. FHQ is of the opinion that we have reached that point in this race. And who are we to go against the trend in Virginia anyway? A Democrat is in the White House, so that means a Republican will win the race for governor in Virginia.
FHQ would be remiss if it didn't at least mention the Christopher Newport University poll. That 21.9% undecideds is an astronomical figure for this late in the race. However, it is their first poll in the race and they did call the Obama-McCain margin correctly in their poll a few weeks prior to the election a year ago (election results vs. poll results). Still, that's a lot of people who are undecided in a race that has stabilized recently. It make for a nice peak on the purple line on the figure above though.
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