Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Polling Results: Gaps Are Narrowing ; Schmidt Posts Big Lead; Kobach Grasps Narrow Advantage

Newspaper article The Topeka Capital-Journal

Polling Results: Gaps Are Narrowing ; Schmidt Posts Big Lead; Kobach Grasps Narrow Advantage

Article excerpt

Aggregation of polling results in Kansas' high-profile campaigns pointed Thursday to narrowing of gaps in races for governor and U.S. Senate, while revealing a slight edge for the Republican secretary of state and huge advantage for the GOP attorney general.

Combining the most recent set of five polls, Democratic gubernatorial nominee Paul Davis' lead on Republican Gov. Sam Brownback compressed to an average 3.86 percentage points, down from 5.4 points.

"This is consistent with polling throughout September that showed Davis with a 4-point lead," said Bob Beatty, a political science professor at Washburn University and organizer of the Insight Kansas aggregation project.

Independent U.S. Senate candidate Greg Orman's distance from U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts, a Republican, closed to 4.2 points with addition of a Fox News poll placing Roberts in the lead for the first time.

Secretary of State Kris Kobach held a 1.6 point lead on Democratic nominee Jean Schodorf, who had gained in polling while courts considered Kobach's legal challenge of the withdrawal by the Democratic Senate candidate. In the end, Topekan Chad Taylor was taken off the November ballot.

"Now that that issue has receded from the news, Kobach is back to pre-Taylor-ballot numbers," Beatty said. "It's possible that Schodorf missed an opportunity ... during the three-week window when they were paying attention to Kobach over the ballot issue."

Attorney General Derek Schmidt, based on the average of four polls, was up by 22 points over Democrat A.J. Kotich.

Beatty said recent polls by CNN and NBC News weren't included in Insight Kansas' updated averages because neither sampled enough Republicans. The New York Times/Yougov polls were rejected because they didn't rely on systematic random sampling techniques.

2nd District race

The Republican and Democratic congressional candidates in the 2nd District have appeared to be ramping up their campaigns.

Margie Wakefield, the Democratic congressional nominee for the 2nd District, toured Wednesday the residential work of Cromwell Environmental, a Kansas-based solar design and installation company. …

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