The Lottsfeldt Strategies leaked a poll in recent days that shows Gov. Bill Walker has a high hill to climb with the Alaska voter.
In a contest between Walker, Republican John Binkley, and Democrat Mark Begich, only 10 percent of participants were strongly in favor of Walker, while 19 percent said they strongly favored Binkley (who is not a declared candidate), and 16 percent were strongly for Begich, (also undeclared).
Patinkin is a survey firm out of Portland that provides research mainly for liberal organizations. Jim Lottsfeldt, the principal of Lottsfeldt Strategies, would be the type of client that Patinkin would accept. PRS also did work to create the Permanent Fund automatic voter registration messaging that helped convince voters to pass the ballot measure in 2016.
The company also checked the pulse of the Republican side of the ballot to see who is gaining traction. Under that question, Binkley still does well, according to the data that has been released, while Mike Dunleavy and Scott Hawkins follow at a distance, and Charlie Huggins and Mike Chenault are in the back of the pack.
Here’s what the governor’s race breakdown looks like in the Patinkin Poll:
Among a wider sample of Republican candidates, Binkley still had the advantage as of mid-December, keeping in mind that Dunleavy had not re-entered the race and so the results are likely skewed:
The Patinkin poll was leaked two weeks ago, but why it was leaked is a mystery. It’s possible that Lottsfeldt is working with his usual client Mark Begich to test the waters. But Begich often uses Harstad Strategies out of Colorado for his polling. It’s equally possible that Lottsfeldt is trying to talk Begich into running by leaking the poll and seeing what kind of support gets generated.
It’s a political year, so anything is possible, and things are often not what they seem.