A new poll conducted by Research & Polling for the Albuquerque Journal found that incumbent Michelle Lujan Grisham leads her closest opponent by 7 points in the upcoming general election.
The same poll found that Democrats have larger leads in the other statewide races this fall.
The poll found that Lujan Grisham, a Democrat, has the support of 47 percent of likely voters, while Republican Mark Ronchetti has the support of 40 percent and Libertarian Karen Bedonie has the support of 5 percent. Another 8 percent were undecided.
The Journal said that female voters and Hispanic voters are driving Lujan Grisham’s lead in her attempt for reelection.
The poll found that 50 percent of women support Lujan Grisham to 32 percent for Ronchetti and 4 percent for Bedonie. A narrow plurality, 44 percent, of men support Lujan Grisham to 43 percent for Ronchetti and 3 percent for Bedonie.
Among Hispanics, 56 percent backed Lujan Grisham, 32 percent Ronchetti and 4 percent Bedonie. Anglo voters, meanwhile, went for Ronchetti, with 46 percent supporting the Republican nominee, 42 percent supporting the Democratic incumbent and 6 percent backing the Libertarian nominee.
Polls have consistently shown Lujan Grisham with a lead, with a Public Policy Polling poll for NM Political Report, conducted days after the primary election, showing Lujan Grisham 3 percentage points ahead of Ronchetti. A poll conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner for an environmental group in July found Lujan Grisham led Ronchetti by 4 percentage points.
While the gubernatorial race is at the top of the ballot, other important statewide races up for grabs this November are also led by the Democratic candidate, per the poll.
The poll found in the open Attorney General race, Bernalillo County District Attorney Raúl Torrez leads Republican Jeremy Gay 49 percent to 33 percent. Current Attorney General Hector Balderas is term-limited and cannot run for a third consecutive term.
In the race for Secretary of State, incumbent Democrat Maggie Toulouse Oliver has the support of 45 percent of likely voters, compared to 33 percent for Republican nominee Audrey Trujillo and 4 percent for Libertarian nominee Mayna Myers.
The open race for state treasurer has Democrat Laura Montoya leading Republican Harry Montoya 44 percent to 33 percent. Incumbent Tim Eichenberg is term-limited.
And in the race for State Land Commissioner, one which Republicans have historically had more success than other races, incumbent Democrat Stephanie Garcia Richard leads 46 percent to 35 percent over Republican Jefferson Byrd.
Polls have generally moved towards Democrats in recent weeks nationwide, after the U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade and the enactment of a number of policies by Congress after a year and a half of stalemates.
This could be one reason for the lead for Lujan Grisham in New Mexico, Sanderoff told the Journal.
New Mexico has a long history of electing incumbents for top positions. The last governor to lose a reelection bid was Bruce King in 1994, when he lost in a three-way race to Republican Gary Johnson. The last U.S. Senator to lose reelection was Republican Harrison Schmitt in 1982.
The poll of 518 likely voters by Research and Polling was conducted from Aug. 19 to Aug. 25 and included live interviews of voters by both cellphone and landlines. The poll has a margin of error of +/- 4.3 percentage points, which means any topline result could be that much higher or lower.