Thursday, August 02, 2018

O'Rourke Is Nipping At Cruz's Heels In Texas Senate Race

These charts reflect the results of the latest Texas Lyceum Poll -- done between July 9th and 25th of 1,178 adults in Texas, with a margin of error of 2.86 points.

Texas was supposed to have one of the safest Republican Senate seats in the nation. No pundit thought a Democrat had a chance of unseating Republican Ted Cruz in Texas. But it seems that Texas voters might have a mind of their own.

The top chart shows registered Texas voters, and the bottom chart shows likely Texas voters. Both of them show Democrat Beto O'Rourke is doing much better than predicted. O'Rourke is within two points of Cruz among both registered voters (Cruz 36% to O'Rourke 34%) and likely voters (Cruz 41% to O'Rourke 39%). That's within the poll's margin of error -- and it means we have a real race for the U.S. Senate here in Texas for the first time in a couple of decades.

There are a lot of undecided voters (24% among registered voters and 19% among likely voters), and the election will probably hinge on who those undecideds break for on election day. It doesn't speak well for incumbent Cruz that there are that many undecideds.

The two candidates have agreed to 5 debates. I don't think Cruz is going to come out of those looking too good. His smarmy smile is not going to look good beside the wholesome grin of O'Rourke -- and O'Rourke is at least equal in his verbal abilities (and better in Spanish).

I do think Cruz still has a slight advantage due to being Republican and the incumbent, but that could disappear by November. This race is starting to get exciting!

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