MEMO: A Near Certainty Moore Wins Tomorrow
Alabama-based research and communication firm Cygnal conducted a telephone survey over the weekend in Alabama to examine the Republican primary runoff election for the open US Senate seat vacated by US Attorney General Jeff Sessions. It is representative of a projected GOP primary runoff turnout universe of less than 370,000, although we think the turnout could be slightly higher.
- ● This is our first survey in the race where the “definitely voting” percentage was above 90%.
- ● Moore leads Strange by 11pts overall; 12pts among those definitely supporting their candidate.
- ● “Probably Strange” voters are significantly less likely to vote (69%) than “Probably Moore” voters
(93%), with nearly an identical number of respondents in each group.
- ● Trump’s endorsement does not appear to have impacted the race; respondents said it made
31% vote for Strange, 30% vote for Moore, and 39% no effect.
- ● The Trump endorsement effect was borne out in two separate question approaches.
- ● A majority of voters said the advertising did not affect their decision; it did affect Moore voters
more than Strange voters, which is probably the opposite effect outside groups wished to have.
RUNOFF BALLOT MATCHUP
- ● Males overwhelmingly support Moore (59% – 36%).
- ● The race is a dead heat with females with slightly higher undecideds.
- ● The closest age group is voters 70+ (47% Moore – 46% Strange); Moore strongly leads all other.
- ● Among voters with the lowest propensity to turnout tomorrow, Strange leads by 2pts. It is among
this group that if turnout spikes, the race tightens but most likely not enough to change results.
- ● By(grouped)mediamarket[seetoplinesforgroupings]:
- ○ Huntsville (19.5% of vote) – 51% Moore – 43% Strange
- ○ Birmingham (42% of vote) – 48% Moore – 45% Strange
- ○ Montgomery (25% of vote) – 63% Moore – 30% Strange
- ○ Mobile (14% of vote) – 48% Moore – 46% Strange
- ● Among voters with whom the Trump endorsement self-reportedly had no effect, 60% support
Moore and 29% support Strange.
- ● It does appear that nearly half of Strange’s support came as a result of Trump’s endorsement.
- ● Of voters unsure of who to vote for, 61% said the Trump endorsement will have no effect on
their choice, and 26% are undecided on whether the Trump endorsement means anything.
ADVERTISING IN THE RACE
- ● Voters who said the advertising has had an effect on their candidate choice are choosing Moore
by 32pts; with those not affected by advertising, the race is 49% Moore – 46% Strange.
- ● Advertising affected men more than women by 6pt and voters under 40 by more than double.
Judge Roy Moore appears well-poised to become US Senator Roy Moore. Despite Trump’s endorsement and millions of dollars in negative advertising, Strange is still 10pts way from the threshold of 50%. Not leading in a single demographic group on this survey is holding Strange back.
As is always said in a poll analysis, turnout will play a major factor in final results, but in special elections this is even more true. Our survey was built around a lower turnout than the August primary. Even if we are wrong on turnout and the survey results were slightly skewed by only calling landlines, the margin for Moore is large enough that we have a 92% confidence he will win tomorrow.
This telephone survey was conducted September 23-34, 2017, with 996 Republican primary runoff special election voters. It has a margin of error of ±3.10%. Interviews were conducted using IVR technology to landlines, and quota groupings were adjusted for fielding to better reach younger demographics. The survey was weighted to a projected statewide GOP special election primary runoff voter universe. The weighting average across all groups was only 1.2 – much lower than the accepted industry average of 2. [Cygnal paid for the survey, and L2 provided the voter data.]
Cygnal is a research and communication firm serving center-right committees, organizations, and consultants. They have worked with ~150 clients group and conducted more than 360 highly accurate polls in nearly every state. www.cygn.al
L2 is a nonpartisan, nationwide voter data and analytics firm. They invest significant resources in maintaining an accurate voter file to ensure campaigns have the best tools at their disposal. www.l2political.com