Insight: Where might undecided voters go in Senate, Governor races?

Insight: Where might undecided voters go in Senate, Governor races?

By TODD STACY, Alabama Daily News

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – It has been interesting to follow the polling in the races for Senate and governor this cycle.

The rise and slide of Mike Durant. The Mo Brooks roller coaster. Katie Britt’s steady climb. Kay Ivey’s resilience in the face of attacks.

At the risk of stating the obvious, the one thing most can agree on is that previously undecided voters are going to decide a lot tomorrow.

They’ll decide whether Brooks or Durant face Britt in the runoff.

They’ll also decide whether or not Ivey goes to a runoff, and which candidate she faces.

Based on the last ADN / Gray Television poll conducted by Cygnal, we took a look at the cross tabs on these undecided voters to see how they might lean on election day.

First in the governor’s race, a reminder on the ballot question. Kay Ivey was the choice of 47.5% of likely Republican voters, with 11.3% undecided.

CandidateMay 16 2022May 6 2022March 2022August 2021
Kay Ivey47.5%40.0%46.1%41.5%
Tim James15.9%17.9%12.4%3.5%
Lindy Blanchard13.4%14.6%10.4%-
Lew Burdette7.6%5.8%1.6%-
Dean Odle2.1%3.6%4.7%3.1%
Dean Young0.0%0.6%--
Someone else2.3%3.5%3.4%9.2%
Undecided11.3%13.8%21.3%33.9%

Among that 11.3% of undecided voters, here are the candidates favorability numbers with Trump thrown in for comparison sake:

NameTrumpIveyJamesBlanchard
Favorable68%49%36%22%
Very Favorable57%1%6%3%
Unfavorable27%37%24%21%
Very Unfavorable21%12%11%9%

The fact that nearly half of undecided voters view Ivey favorable, by far the most among the candidates, would seem to help her. Remember, she only needs about 2.5% to break her way, and could already be there considering the margin for error.

On the other hand, virtually all of those who have a favorable view of Ivey are in the “somewhat favorable” category as opposed to “very favorable.” So they aren’t exactly enthusiastic about the incumbent governor.

Now to the Senate, where our last poll showed a tightening race. Britt led the ballot test at 31%, but Brooks was close behind after picking up 12 points in the last two months. Just 10% of voters remained undecided.

CandidateMay 16 2022May 6 2022March 2022August 2021
Katie Britt30.8%32.0%28.4%17.7%
Mo Brooks28.5%22.5%16.1%40.8%
Mike Durant24.3%21.4%34.6%-
Someone else6.4%8.5%6.5%-
Undecided10.0%15.5%14.4%31.8%

Of that 10% of undecided voters, here’s how they view the candidates.

NameTrumpBrittBrooksDurant
Favorable68%27%34%24%
Very Favorable57%4%4%2%
Unfavorable27%29%35%36%
Very Unfavorable21%7%14%15%

Among undecided voters, Brooks has the highest favorability rating at 34%. Durant has the lowest favorability at 24% and the highest unfavorability at 36%, meaning he is 12 points underwater with undecided voters. In what should be a tight race for the runoff, these numbers suggest Brooks has the advantage over Durant.

It’s also interesting to note that a full 27% of undecided voters have an unfavorable view of Donald Trump. That’s significantly higher than the full contingent of voters at 18.4%. Given the repeated claims of loyalty to Trump by most if not all those running for governor and Senate, these voters haven’t found a candidate they can get behind. It could also suggest that they won’t vote on Election Day, effectively reducing the number of undecided voters.