With 26 days to go until the Virginia Democratic primary, it’s “as tight as the rusted lug nuts on a ’55 Ford,” as Dan Rather liked to say, according to a brand-new Washington Post poll. Here are the highlights.
- Among Democratic-identifying likely voters, Tom Perriello leads Ralph Northam 40%-38%.
- Among Democratic-idenfitying registered voters, Perriello leads Northam 35%-29%.
- Perriello leads among men (36%-27%) and women (35%-30%).
- Perriello leads huge (41%-21%) among voters age 18-39 and by just 4 points (34%-30%) among voters age 40-64. Northam leads big (43%-27%) among voters age 65+
- Perriello leads by a 36%-30% margin among white voters and by a 35%-29% margin among non-white voters.
- Regionally, Perriello is crushing it (58%-20%) in SW Virginia, also leads big (40%-30%) in the Richmond area and leads narrowly (23%-22%) in Northern Virginia. Not surprisingly, Northam leads big (40%-28%) in his home region of Tidewater.
- Democratic likely voters split evenly (36%-36%) on whether Perriello or Northam would have a better chance of beating the Republican nominee in November.
- By a 38%-30% margin, Democratic likely voters believe that Perriello “would do more to stand up against Donald Trump” than Northam would.
- By a 35%-32% margin (basically a tie), Democratic likely voters say that Perriello “better reflects the core values of the Democratic Party.”
- By an enormous 57%-15% margin, Democratic likely voters say that endorsements by Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren make them more likely to vote for Perriello.
- Also by an enormous margin (50%-17%), Democratic likely voters say that endorsements by Gov. McAuliffe and “nearly all Virginia Democrats in Congress and the state legislature” of Ralph Northam make them more likely to vote for Northam.
- Among Hillary Clinton supporters in the 2016 Virginia Democratic presidential primary, it’s 35% Northam-34% Perriello (note: so much for the simplistic media narrative about this race?). Among Bernie Sanders supporters, it’s Perriello 40%-Northam 22%.
- 56% of Virginia registered voters say they are following the governor’s race “very closely” (15%) or “somewhat closely” (40%)
Also worth noting is that Northam has been outspending Perriello heavily (I’ve heard as much as 5:1) on TV yet he still trails by two points. The question is, what happens if that spending gap closes in the final 3+ weeks? On a related note, Northam has spent a bunch money in the Hampton Roads TV market but he’s only up 12 there, with a large number of undecided voters. Hmmmmmm…
P.S. The latest Q-Poll, from mid-April, had this race at Perriello 25%-Northam 20% with 51% (!) undecided. Looks like a lot fewer undecided voters in the WaPo poll, but a similar margin for Perriello among registered voters (5 points in the Q-Poll, 6 points in the WaPo poll).