April 17, 2018

Pearce poll puts him within 2 points of Lujan Grisham

Steve Pearce’s campaign released an internal poll showing he trails Michelle Lujan Grisham by two percentage points.

The campaign touted the results, saying they show the race is within the margin of error and so essentially tied.

The poll, conducted by The Tarrance Group, showed Lujan Grisham with the support of 47 percent of registered voters and Pearce with the support of 45 percent.

Related post: Is the governor’s race tied?

Pearce does not have a primary opponent, while Lujan Grisham is facing two Democrats in June’s primary.

“Michelle Lujan Grisham starts this race with significant structural advantages, including national headwinds, yet her inherent weakness with voters and Steve Pearce’s underlying strengths continue to show up in the numbers,” according to Tarrance Group pollster BJ Martino’s announcement of the results, which he said put the race in a “dead heat.”

“These numbers show Steve Pearce has built a positive image with voters based on his own unique life story and a plan for economic opportunity for all New Mexicans,” Pearce campaign manage Paul Smith said. “Michelle Lujan Grisham is meanwhile stuck in the mud with few ideas and a hyper-partisan message designed only for her base.”

Lujan Grisham’s campaign said called it “no surprise” that the Republican poll showed a tied race.

“After all, Pearce has been in Congress for 13 of the last 15 years, run statewide before, and President Trump is all in to support him,” Lujan Grisham spokesman Victor Reyes said to NM Political Report. “That being said, our campaign will not take the threat of Steve Pearce lightly which is why we are building the infrastructure necessary to ensure voters know about his record of failing New Mexico families — that infrastructure includes having staff and offices across the state including communities like Clovis.”

This is only the second poll to be released in the gubernatorial race—the previous poll was also conducted by The Tarrance Group. A poll conducted last spring  showed Lujan Grisham with a four percentage point lead over Pearce.

No independent polls have been released in the gubernatorial race yet.

Typically, campaigns release internal polls when they show good news for the campaign. And, as with this poll, do not generally include much context beyond a single question or two.

Shortly after Pearce’s campaign released the poll, the campaign sent an email fundraiser out mentioning the results.

The poll of 608 likely voters was conducted between April 9 and 12. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 4.1 percentage points.

Pearce Internal Poll April 2018 by New Mexico Political Report on Scribd