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The Democratic Governors Association The Mellman Group, Inc. Tomblin Continues To Lead Maloney September 21, 2011
This analysis represents the findings of a survey of 500 likely 2011 Special Election voters in West Virginia. Interviews were conducted by telephone September 16-19, 2011 using a registration-based sample. The margin of error for this survey is +/-4.4% at the 95% level of confidence. The margin of error is higher for subgroups.
With only two weeks until Election Day, Acting West Virginia Governor Earl Ray Tomblin continues to lead Bill Maloney by a double-digit margin in the race for governor. Governor Tomblin has Tomblin Leads Maloney By Double Digits withstood a torrent of negative personal attacks to Gubernatorial Vote maintain a 10-point lead over his Republican +10 60% 46% challenger. As in our August survey, strong 36% support for Tomblin (32%) 40% far outweighs strong 18% support for Maloney (21%). 32% 20% Independents split (37% Strong 21% Tomblin, 35% Maloney), Strong while Tomblin does a 0% better job consolidating his Undecided party base than Maloney, with 75% of Democrats supporting Tomblin and 70% of Republicans supporting Maloney. Tomblin leads by two points among men, but by 18-points among women; by two points among voters under 50 (42%-40%), and 13-points among voters 50 or older (47%-34%). Tomblin also has the edge in the state’s three most populous media markets, including a 58%-30% lead in the Charleston-Huntington market. Maloney has become better known to voters, but he has not become better liked. Thirty-eight percent (38%) view him favorably, an 8-point increase since August, but 27% view him unfavorably, a 14-point increase. By contrast, Tomblin continues to be viewed favorably by a full majority (51%) of voters.
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The Mellman Group (September 2011)
Tomblin also holds advantages over Maloney on many of the most important issues and character traits. Voters believe Tomblin is keeping West Virginia out of debt (48% say this term is descriptive of Tomblin, 22% say it is not descriptive vs. 30%-22% for Maloney), understands the problems West Virginians are facing (51% describes, 26% does not describe vs. 34%-24% for Maloney), and provides strong leadership (49% describes, 27% does not describe vs. 31%-24% for Maloney). In this difficult political environment, some voters are focused more on Washington than on West Virginia. Among self-identified Democrats and independents voting for Maloney, 25% say their vote is “mainly a protest against what Obama and the Democrats are doing in Washington,” while 69% maintain their vote is “mainly a result of your feelings about Maloney and Tomblin.” Motivating turnout in the Democratic base is accomplished most effectively by emphasizing education, Maloney’s status as a millionaire, and jobs. Tomblin voters are especially turned off by Bill Maloney’s plan to reject all federal education funding; over two-thirds (69%) find the following argument very convincing as a reason to turn out to vote in the special election: “West Virginians should vote to keep funding for our schools. Bill Maloney wants to reject all federal education funding for our schools, forcing West Virginia families to either pay more in taxes or cut from education to make up the difference. West Virginians need to vote to protect our schools and our future”. Among Democrats, an argument against out of state millionaires also resonates: “West Virginians should vote to send a message that our state is not for sale. Out-of-state millionaires like Bill Maloney come to West Virginia in the hopes of using our state for their Along With Education And Jobs, Sending A Message That W.V. personal gain. By voting, Is Not For Sale To Out-Of-State Millionaires Is Effective West Virginians can send Among Democrats a clear message that our Infrequently Reasons To Vote In The Special Election Total Dem Strong Tomblin state is not for sale.” The Voting (ranked by % very convincing) ID Democrats Voters Democrats education and millionaire West Virginians should vote to keep funding for our schools. Bill messages are the top two Maloney wants to reject all federal education funding for our schools forcing West Virginia families to either pay more in taxes or cut from 67% 68% 69% 69% education to make up the difference. West Virginians need to vote to arguments to cast ballots protect our schools and our future. among strong Democrats West Virginians should vote to send a message that our state is not for sale. Out-of-state millionaires like Maloney come to W.V. in the hopes 64% 62% 65% 69% of using our state for their personal gain. By voting, West Virginians (69% and 65% “very can send a clear message that our state is not for sale. West Virginians should vote to keep jobs in our state. If elected, Bill convincing,” respectively), Maloney will end the incentives that encourage businesses like Amazon 62% 63% 63% 65% to come to West Virginia. West Virginians need to vote to keep good while a jobs message jobs here. West Virginians should vote to keep health care costs down. Maloney comes in second place wants to require people to visit the doctor every month to determine how much they should pay and make anyone with unhealthy 62% 61% 61% 64% behind education among characteristics like high blood pressure pay more. WV’ans need to vote to protect our families from more crazy changes to health care. Democrats who are West Virginians should vote to protect W.V. from Maloney’s risky ideas. If elected, he will end business incentives that help businesses like Macy’s come here and create jobs. He also wants to reject all infrequent voters (68% 61% 60% 62% 66% federal education funding for our schools … these risky ideas would mean fewer jobs and higher taxes for working families. and 63% “very convincing,” respectively).