D.C. mayor polls: Gray maintains advantage
Good news and bad news for Mayor Adrian M. Fenty in two new polls released Wednesday.
The heartening news: Both show Vincent Gray with a narrower lead in the mayoral race than was shown in the Washington Post poll released 10 days ago. The deflating news: Both still have Gray with a significant lead, and one shows Gray's lead growing since three weeks ago.
One, an automated telephone poll conducted from Aug. 30 to Sept. 1 by Public Policy Polling for Washington City Paper and WAMU-FM has Gray ahead of Fenty 50 percent to 39 percent among registered Democrats, with a 3.5 point error margin. The other, a live-caller poll of 492 likely Democratic primary voters conducted Tuesday by Clarus Research Group, has Gray ahead by seven points, 45 to 38, with a 4.4 point margin.
In a Clarus poll conducted Aug. 15 and 16, Gray held a five-point advantage over Fenty. "Vincent Gray has expanded his lead over Adrian Fenty since mid-August," said Clarus President Ron Faucheux in a release, with the caveat that "Election Day turnout is still the key factor."
The Post's poll, which contacted 780 registered Democrats over eight days in late August, had Gray up 17 points among likely voters.
The Clarus numbers, as do pretty much every other poll done on this race, show a "deep racial divide." And, as mentioned before on this blog, the demographics of the electorate is a key factor, given the racial split. The new Clarus poll pegs the electorate at 55 percent black, while the Clarus poll in August had black voters at 52 percent of the sample. The PPP survey, generally considered less reliable because it's a robocall, polled 56 percent black voters.
Clarus has published two turnout scenarios: With a 50 percent black electorate, "Gray's current margin over Fenty would narrow to 2 points, 43 percent to 41 percent -- making it a very tight race." But if black turnout rises to 60 percent or more -- 63 percent is what The Post's polling indicates -- "then Gray's lead would expand to 11 points, 47 percent to 36 percent."
September 8, 2010; 6:00 PM ET
Categories: Adrian Fenty , DCision 2010 , The District , Vincent Gray
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