Some headscratchers in the latest “we swear we’re right” poll from CNU’s Wason Center. Margin for error in this poll is plus/minus 3.7 percentage points, which means a huge range of 7.4 error.
But their methodology gives Ralph Northam a 6 point lead. Four years ago, CNU gave McAuliffe a 7-point lead over Cuccinelli in October, and McAuliffe only won by 2. CNU called the 7-point lead it gave Mark Warner on Oct 31st “solid”, but days later Warner eeked out a win by less than 1%.
So excuse me if I count on CNU polling for less than “local weatherman” accuracy.
But, in this latest poll, there are a couple things I’d call interesting.
- Gillespie wins Republicans 89-4, Northam wins Democrats 94-2. They split Independents 38-38. Party ID is plus-4 Democrat and that’s apparently enough to give Northam a 7-point lead.
- The Democrat statewide races basically follow the “generic ballot”. Gillespie-Northam 41-47, Vogel-Fairfax 42-46, Adams, Herring 42-47, Republican-Democrat 40-47. Independents, my eye.
- Did you know Hampton Roads is more Democrat than NOVA? It is in this poll. Generic Ballot has NOVA +14 Democrat and Hampton Roads a whopping +19 Democrat. That’s not just Ralph Northam. That’s the simple party preference. CNU gave Warner a +10 in Hampton Roads and Hillary Clinton a mere +7 in Hampton Roads. I can’t find a poll that gave Democrats a +19 advantage in Hampton Roads (until now).
- Dems have trouble in SW. CNU puts SW Virginia at 47-41 (+6 GOP) but have Justin Fairfax losing SW by 18 and Mark Herring losing SW by 14. CNU only has Gillespie up by 5, but the statewide polling for all three races is almost identical. How is that? CNU says SW VA accounts for 21% of these polls, but it sure doesn’t seem to have much impact on CNU’s final numbers.
Given CNU’s track record of giving Democrats 5-6 points higher than reality, a CNU poll giving Northam a 6-point lead is a dead heat even race to me.