Guthrie up by 10 in latest SurveyUSA poll

Republican Brett Guthrie of Bowling Green continues to build on his lead in Kentucky’s 2nd Congressional District, according to the latest SurveyUSA conducted this week for Roll Call newspaper in Washington D.C. and WHAS-TV in Louisville.

Brett Guthrie

The survey of 587 likely voters contacted on Monday and Tuesday found that 53 percent plan to back Guthrie and 43 percent are supporting his opponent, Democrat David Boswell of Sorgho. The margin of error for the poll is 4.1 percentage points.

This is the third straight SurveyUSA poll showing Guthrie with a lead in the district. A poll released Oct. 17 showed Guthrie leading 51 to 42 and a Sept. 26 survey had Guthrie with a 49-43 lead over Boswell. 

This most recent poll showed Republican John McCain leading Democrat Barack Obama 62 to 35 in the presidential race in Kentucky’s 2nd District, which is considered one of the more conservative congressional districts in the state. 

The survey also looked at the opinions likely voters hold about the two congressional candidates, and neither one appears to be an overwhelming favorite.

David Boswell

David Boswell

The results show 36 percent had a favorable opinion of Guthrie while only 32 percent held a favorable opinion of Boswell. About the same amount – about 31 percent – were neutral about the two men, who are both state senators. 

Those surveyed think much higher of retiring Congressman Ron Lewis, a Cecilia Republican, who is leaving his 2nd District seat after seven terms. Lewis received a favorable rating of 60 percent, which higher than McCain’s 55 percent and much higher than the 33.5 percent who approved of Obama.

Both President George Bush and Congress faired poorly in the poll. Only 39 percent approve of the job Bush is doing as president and only 9 percent approve of the job Congress is doing.


In a release issued this morning, the Boswell camp called SurveyUSA “vastly out of touch” with the other polling done in the race and said the firm has not reflected what “national political pundits” have said. 

The release noted other poll results conducted for the Boswell campaign and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee that have found 1-point and 6-point leads for Boswell. 

“SurveyUSA’s poll numbers in no way track with where anyone else sees the state of the race,” said Mark Riddle, media consultant for Boswell, in the release. “We have consistently seen polling showing Boswell ahead, and every other indicator provies that national political handicappers are seeing the same thing.”

At a rally and pig roast in Owensboro Thursday night, Boswell told a crowd of more than 100 that his campaign’s internal polling show him ahead by between 1 and 6 percentage points heading into the final days of the campaign. 

“It’s a close race,” Boswell said. “We’re running like we’re six points behind.”

DCCC poll shows Boswell with 6-point lead in KY-2

The results of a poll conducted for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee show Democrat David Boswell with a 6-point lead over his Republican opponent Brett Guthrie in Kentucky’s 2nd Congressional District race. 

The poll was conducted Oct. 20-21 by Benenson Strategy Group and surveyed 401 likely voters in the 21-county district, with 47 percent supporting Boswell and 41 percent supporting Guthrie, according to the DCCC. The poll has a margin of error of 4.9 percentage points. 

This newest poll follows a SurveyUSA poll conducted two weeks ago that had Guthrie leading by nine points and a Garin-Hart-Yang poll in early October that had Boswell up by one point. 


SurveyUSA poll shows McCain with lead, McConnell and Lunsford tied

The most recent SurveyUSA poll conducted for WHAS-TV in Louisville and WLEX-TV in Lexington shows Kentucky’s senior senator Mitch McConnell dead even with Democratic challenger Bruce Lunsford as the race heads into the final two weeks. 

The poll released today tackled both the presidential and senatorial contests in Kentucky, and found Republican John McCain with a 13-point lead over Democrat Barack Obama. 

But in the U.S. Senate race, where the talk has been recently of a tightening contest, McConnell and Lunsford, a Louisville businessman, split the field of 535 likely voters with 48 percent each. 

McConnell appears to he fairing better with male voters while Lunsford is pulling in more female voters, according to the results. McConnell has a lead in western Kentucky and north central Kentucky while Lunsford is leading in Louisville and eastern Kentucky. 

Overall, more than 80 percent said their choices were firm and unlikely to change between now and Election Day on Nov. 4. 

The results come as McConnell is on a 60-plus stop bus tour around the state leading up to the election and Lunsford prepares to bring in big political names, including former President Bill Clinton, into the state to boost his efforts.

Those efforts include a stop in Owensboro Saturday for a fundraiser at the Owensboro Museum of Science and History followed by the Wendell H. Ford Democratic Picnic at the Sportscenter. Lunsford will be joined by former Nebraska governor and Sen. Bob Kerrey at both events.

New poll shows Guthrie up by 9 in KY-2; Boswell internal poll shows him up by 1

A SurveyUSA poll conducted for WHAS-TV in Louisville this week shows Republican Brett Guthrie of Bowling Green stretching out his lead over Democrat David Boswell of Sorgho in Kentucky’s 2nd District race. 

The poll, conducted Wednesday and Thursday of 800 adults in the 21-county district with 599 likely to vote Nov. 4, shows Guthrie pulling in 51 percent of the vote with Boswell garnering 42 percent. The poll showed 7 percent undecided and had a margin of error of 4.2 points. 

The results showed Guthrie supported by 86 percent of the Republicans surveyed and 22 percent of the Democrats in the district that has a majority of Democrats but is considered conservative. Independents were split between the two candidates.

Guthrie also won out with those describing themselves as pro-life, an issue on which the two candidates agree and Boswell has asserted often in his campaign appearances and advertisements. Guthrie was recently endorsed by the Kentucky Right to Life Association.

Guthrie’s lead is 3 points larger than a SurveyUSA poll from Sept. 26 that had Guthrie up 49 percent to 43 percent. 

The new poll comes after Boswell said  this week that internal polling by firm Garin-Hart-Yang showed him in the lead, though Boswell didn’t release the details of that poll.


David Boswell’s campaign released a polling memo from Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group this afternoon showing him with a slight 41 to 40 lead over Guthrie with 19 percent of those polled still undecided. 

The survey of 402 likely voters had a margin of error of 5 percentage points and was conducted Oct. 8-9. 

Also tackling name recognition, the survey found that both candidates were almost equally well-known, with 55 percent recognizing Boswell’s name and 51 percent reconizing Guthrie’s name.

Heading into the general election, many predicted that name recognition would be one of Guthrie’s biggest challenges, but with these results its seems to have become a non-issue. 

Mark Riddle, media consultant for Boswell, said he wasn’t surprised by the equalization on the name recognition issue. 

“By Election Day, both candidates will be widely well-known around the district,” Riddle said. “Sen. Guthrie has been spending a lot of money on television.”

SurveyUSA poll finds Guthrie up by 6 in 2nd District race

The latest public poll in Kentucky’s 2nd District has Republican Brett Guthrie up by 6 points over his Democratic opponent David Boswell.

The poll conducted by SurveyUSA for WHAS-TV in Louisville and released today shows those surveyed favor Guthrie, a state senator from Bowling Green, to Boswell, a Sorgho state senator, by a margin of 49 to 43 percent, a reversal of the lead in the polling firm’s last survey in June that showed Boswell with ahead 47 to 43. 

The Guthrie camp downplayed the impact and importance of polls in response to these most recent results. 

“Polls go up and they go down,” Guthrie campaign manager Brian Smith said in a statement. “While polls will bounce around, Brett Guthrie’s integrity, work ethic and conservative values will remain consistent through Election Day and that’s why he’ll win this race.”

SurveyUSA sampled 592 likely voters on Wednesday and Thursday for the poll – that followed a controversial television ad produced by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee that began airing in Louisville on Tuesday.

The ad made claims that Guthrie’s company Trace Die Cast Inc. sent manufacturing work to Mexico and was disputed by Guthrie, Trace Die Cast Inc. and the National Republican Congressional Committee. At least one of the four stations that was airing the ad pulled it from the air.

Boswell attributed Guthrie’s bump to the head start Guthrie had in running television commercials, but said he didn’t see any impact from the DCCC ad that began running this week. 

Guthrie aired his first ad on Sept. 12, while Boswell’s first ad didn’t hit the air until this Tuesday – the same day the DCCC ad began airing. 

“Obviously they had about a 10-day jump on us with media and online with their commercials,” Boswell said. “I would anticipate there would be some degree of fluctuation with that. … It’s not the end of the world.”

Compared to SurveyUSA’s previous poll, Guthrie made gains among male voters, who had previously been split between the two candidates but now favor Guthrie by 12 percentage points. 

Boswell has described himself as a conservative Democrat, and on Thursday received the endorsement of the Blue Dog Coalition, a group of moderate to conservative Democrats in Congress. 

But those surveyed this week who identified themselves as conservative largely preferred Guthrie by a margin of 75 to 17 percent, compared to 70 to 23 percent in the June poll. Boswell leads among those that describe themselves as moderate and liberal, two groups that accounted for 43 percent of those surveyed. 

Kentucky’s 2nd District is a Democratic district according to voter registration, but has sent a Republican to Congress since 1994. Evidence of those crossover voters was seen in today’s survey results that showed 21 percent of Democrats surveyed saying they would vote for Guthrie. Among Republicans surveyed, 8 percent said they would vote for Boswell, according to the poll.

A third poll from earlier this month by the Garin-Hart-Yang firm conducted for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee had Boswell with a 9-point lead over Guthrie, who takes the lead for the first time with this poll.

Tracking U.S. House (horse) races

For those interested in checking out U.S. House races around the country by the numbers, take a look at House Race Tracker

They have compiled the last quarter financial numbers and polling data for numerous House races and coupled them with the television ads that candidates have already put on the air. 

I’m not sure how up-to-date the polling information is, given that they don’t have the latest poll numbers from the Kentucky 2nd race, but that is a lot of information to keep up with. And its not a comprehensive list of all the races, though does target some of the most competitive.

It’s worth a look, if only to see how races here in Kentucky compare to others in the country in money and polling spreads, and to check out what angles candidates from different states are using in their ads.

Maybe western Kentuckians are just nicer…

Mark Hebert with WHAS-TV in Louisville is reporting that Gov. Steve Beshear’s approval rating throughout Kentuckian remained the same in the latest poll conducted for the station by SurveyUSA.

The poll results, which can be seen here, find that among the 600 people surveyed, 44 percent approve of the job Beshear is doing as governor.

When broken down by region, Beshear finds the most support for the job he’s doing in western Kentucky, where 50 percent of those surveyed approve of his tenure so far. Beshear’s lowest numbers were in eastern Kentucky, where only 34 percent approved.

interestingly, Beshear’s numbers come from the same survey in which western Kentucky gave President George Bush the highest marks of any region in the state. Does that mean western Kentuckians might just be a more agreeable folk than those in the rest of the state?