New Gray TV/Alabama Daily News Poll shows Ivey holds comfortable GOP primary lead

(Source: WSFA 12 News file photo)
Published: Mar. 21, 2022 at 11:38 AM CDT|Updated: Mar. 21, 2022 at 3:30 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WBRC) – A new poll, commissioned by Alabama Daily News and Gray Television, shows Gov. Kay Ivey has grown her lead in the Republican primary since a similar poll was taken in August.

Asked who they would vote for if the election was held today, 46.1% of the 600 Republican primary voters surveyed chose Ivey, while 12.4% chose businessman Tim James and 10.4% chose former U.S. Ambassador Lindy Blanchard. The survey showed 21.3% of voters remain undecided in the race.

The Ivey campaign still has work to do if they want to avoid a runoff, because the governor would have to win above 50% of the vote in the May 24th primary in order to avoid a runoff with the second place finisher.

Gray TV/Alabama Daily News Poll
Gray TV/Alabama Daily News Poll(Gray TV/Alabama Daily News)

If the Republican primary election for Governor were held today, and you had to make a choice, who would you vote for?

Kay Ivey 46.1%

Tim James 12.4%

Lindy Blanchard 10.4%

Dean Odle 4.7%

Lew Burdette 1.6%

Someone else 3.4%

Undecided 21.3%

Ivey’s lead has grown by 4.5% since a similar poll in August showed the incumbent governor with 41.5% support while 33% were undecided.

Todd Stacy with Alabama Daily News said, “She needs 50% to avoid a runoff, she’s 4 points away. What I look at is 21.3% undecided and that’s a really important number because they’ve gotta go somewhere.”

Despite pointed criticism of some Covid-related restrictions and a heavy amount of spending on TV/Radio/Digital ads by 2 of her opponents, Ivey’s approval rating among Republicans also improved since August. 66.6% of Republican voters approve of the way Ivey is handling her job as governor, while 21.6% disapprove. Compare that to the August survey when 60.3% approved of Ivey’s performance and 28.3% disapproved.

Gray TV/Alabama Daily News Poll
Gray TV/Alabama Daily News Poll(Gray TV/Alabama Daily News)

Do you approve or disapprove of the way Kay Ivey is handling her job as Governor?

Strongly approve 33.0%

Somewhat approve 33.6%

Total approve 66.6%

Somewhat disapprove 13.6%

Strongly disapprove 7.9%

Total disapprove 21.6%

Unsure 1.5%

Neither approve or disapprove10.4%

Ivey’s lead is less, however, than in a McLaughlin and Associates poll taken a week earlier showing her with 60% support among Republican primary voters. That poll included which candidate voters leaned toward and showed just 14.4% remained undecided.

“Any incumbent governor seeking re-election would love to have a 66% approval rating among their own party heading into that primary, that’s where she’s at,” Stacy said.

The survey also tested the race for Alabama Supreme Court Place 5, with 10.5% choosing Greg Cook while 7.3% chose Deborah Jones, 82.1% remain undecided.

Gray TV/Alabama Daily News Poll
Gray TV/Alabama Daily News Poll(Gray TV/Alabama Daily News)

If the Republican primary election for Supreme Court were held today, and you had to make achoice, who would you vote for?

Greg Cook 10.5%

Deborah Jones 7.3%

Undecided 82.1%

The survey was conducted by Cygnal, an award-winning polling and predictive analysis firm based in Washington, D.C. 600 likely Republican voters were surveyed March 16-17 via interactive voice response and text message. The poll carries a margin for error of +/-4%.

The two best-funded challengers to Ivey are spending heavily on television and radio, showing why they’ve picked up at least some traction in the ADN/Gray poll.

According to the latest campaign finance reports, James spent more than $523,000 on radio and TV, most of it with Red Eagle Media. Blanchard came in second, spending about $477,000 on the air with Virginia-based Multi Media Services Corporation.

Both outspent Ivey, whose campaign shows $424,400 spent on radio and television advertising through Ohio-based Flexpoint Media Inc.

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