McAuliffe holds narrow lead in poll of Va. governor’s race

A poll finds former Gov. Terry McAuliffe is leading in the race to regain his old job – but it’s a tight contest.

The poll by JMC Analytics and Polling finds McAuliffe ahead of his Republican opponent, businessman Glenn Youngkin, by 46% to 42% overall, with 12% undecided. But it’s within the margin of error and, as the polling firm notes, that’s a lot narrower than President Joe Biden’s 10-percentage-point victory over then-president Donald Trump last November.

The other Democratic candidates for statewide office hold similarly narrow leads: Democratic Del. Hala Ayala leads Republican former Del. Winsome Sears by 42% to 36%, with 22% undecided, while Attorney General Mark Herring, a Democrat, leads Republican Del. Jason Miyares, 45% to 38%, with 17% undecided.

The generic-ballot question — whether a respondent would prefer the Democratic or Republican candidate for the House of Delegates – yielded only a one-point Democratic advantage, 44% to 43%.

The poll was taken June 9 (the day after the Democratic primaries) through June 12, and surveyed 550 people. The margin of error was given as 4.2%.

“In summary,” the poll found, “Democrats start off with leads both in statewide and/or House of Delegates races, but it’s not a secure lead, and there are noticeable signs of underperformance relative to President Biden’s 2020 race.”

The poll also found that 49% of respondents approved of the job Biden is doing, while 44% disapprove, and Gov. Ralph Northam’s job performance is viewed positively by a one-point margin, 45% to 44%.

Rick Massimo

Rick Massimo came to WTOP, and to Washington, in 2012 after having lived in Providence, R.I., since he was a child. He went to George Washington University as an undergraduate and is regularly surprised at the changes to the city since that faraway time.

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