A PRESS RELEASE HOPING TO BOLSTER HIS ODDS
The Walker campaign today said that two different polls show that he and Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott are set to win against the man they have picked as their opponent: Mike Dunleavy.
The Walker campaign’s press release says Walker is enjoying a two-year high in the polls and holds a “commanding lead with independents, rural Alaskans, and likely voters.”
“The Walker-Mallott campaign today released in-depth analysis of multiple polls taken over the last two months showing strong and growing support for the unity ticket over candidate Mike Dunleavy. Dunleavy is a State Senator from the Mat-Su who resigned his position at the beginning of the 2018 legislative session in order to campaign. The research memo can be found here. “
The “multiple” polls are two, and they have weaknesses associated with them. The polls are one that Patinkin conducted in February and one that Ivan Moore did in March, when it appears the Walker campaign bought a few questions on the Moore Alaska Research Survey poll, which is a grab-bag poll, with questions for hire.
The “here” is a crafted message from the Walker campaign’s polling firm, Patinkin Research.
The analysis is far from in-depth, but shows the governor favorably, as campaign operatives would expect.
The problem they have is that a Morning Consult poll from February that shows Walker as the least liked governor in the nation. Morning Consult is not associated with a campaign.
WALKER CAMP’S WORRY
But the release of the information from the Walker camp so soon after the release of a summary of the first poll is also seen as the campaign further settling on who it thinks is Walker’s main opponent and attempting to define that in the mind of the media. Walker is going to try to appeal to the swing voters now, rather than waiting until the Republican field shakes out.
Walker is still worried that Mark Begich, a well-known Democrat, will get in the race, another reason for releasing another polling-related press release. A recently leaked poll from the Begich camp shows that he would beat Dunleavy, 53-42. Begich has been shopping that poll around with potential supporters, and it’s from the same Ivan Moore grab-bag poll.
Dunleavy, too, can boast some strong poll numbers that show something entirely different: “Dunleavy for Alaska,” a political action committee that formed to run a parallel effort supporting his candidacy, says Dunleavy is beating Walker, 47-41 percent, with “unsure or someone else” winning 12 percent.
That poll was done by Dittman Research, which has accurately predicted the winners of Alaska gubernatorial and senatorial races 100 percent of the time for the last 50 years.
Not so, says the More poll: Walker approval ratings are improving. Only 35 percent of Alaskans have an unfavorable view of the governor.
“The poll has 44 percent offering a positive perception of Governor Walker. Only 35 percent have negative perceptions. Positive reviews for the Governor are now the best he’s received since March of 2016,” the white paper reveals. But the Ivan Moore poll measures favorability on a three-point, instead of a four-point scale, which skews his results to the “neutral” category.
Patinkin soldiers on with the message that there’s even “more good news for the Walker/Mallot campaign, Democrats (44%) and independents (40%) are the two partisan subgroups most likely to be undecided. The centrist coalition spear-headed by the Governor will have an easier time appealing to these voters than the more conservative Dunleavy campaign.”
And yet, by his own numbers, Walker has just half of the votes from Democrats. The other half have not come back to him since he ran under the Democrats’ banner in 2014 and won all the Democrat votes, since the Alaska Democratic Party pulled its candidates at the last minute and replaced them with Walker/Mallott.
Other candidates running for governor in 2018 are Scott Hawkins, who is a businessman based in Anchorage, and Rep. Mike Chenault, of Nikiski. Both are Republicans.
Must Read Alaska welcomes civil comments on these Walker polls and the analysis given by the Walker campaign consultant.