A poll released on Thursday by JMC Analytics and Polling shows that the race between Louisiana incumbent Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards and Republican challenger Eddie Rispone is a dead heat two days before voters go to the polls on Saturday.
The poll showed that 45.5 percent of likely Louisiana voters support Rispone, while 45 percent support Edwards, with nine percent undecided. The poll of 600 likely voters was conducted between November 12 and November 13 and has a four percent margin of error.
“This race will go down to the wire,” JMC noted in its executive summary.
“While Governor Edwards has lost a bit of support since the last [JMC] poll,” the executive summary continued, “Rispone hasn’t seen an increase in his support.”
JMC concluded that the outcome of the election will be determined by two factors: “(1) the extent to which black Election Day turnout will increase in the same manner that early voting turnout did … and (2) the extent to which the ‘also ran’ vote (particularly the vote that went to Ralph Abraham) defects to Governor Edwards.”
JMC offered this more detailed analysis of poll responses by demographic groups:
The basic contours of the race have remained constant throughout the runoff: black voters are solidly in Governor Edwards’ corner (87-7% lead over Rispone if undecided “leaners” are included, compared to 88-8% in the last poll). White Democrats favor Edwards 59-37% (60-37% in the last poll). Rispone leads and has gained some strength (but does not dominate) among white Independents: 59-34% (56-38% in the last poll).
Among Republicans, Rispone’s support remains solid: 79-11% (79-17% in the last poll). Furthermore, there is (with “leaners” included) an 18 point gender gap (down from 21 points in the last poll): women favor Governor Edwards 50-42%, while men favor Rispone 52-42%.
President Donald Trump is holding a rally to support Rispone, the GOP candidate, in Bossier City, Louisiana, Thursday night. Last week the president held a similar rally to support Rispone in Monroe City, Louisiana.
The president’s ability to get out the vote to help Republican candidates for whom he holds rallies has been well documented, particularly in recent weeks, as it was in the special election in North Carolina’s Ninth Congressional District in September, and in the Mississippi gubernatorial race last week. Though the president’s rally in support of Kentucky’s incumbent Republican governor, Matt Bevin, was not enough to give him an election night win last week, most analysts attribute the outcome to Bevin’s unpopularity.
In Louisiana, the JMC poll suggests that the president’s rallies for Rispone will boost support for the Baton Rouge businessman on Saturday.
Louisiana voters strongly oppose the current impeachment inquiry.
When asked, “Do you support or oppose the impeachment inquiry that Democrats have begun against President Trump?” 54 percent said they oppose the inquiry, while only 37 percent support it.
This is a significant result because the question is framed only about the impeachment inquiry, and does not ask the further question if voters support the impeachment and removal of the president. Most national polls that pose both these questions have demonstrated that support for impeachment and removal is significantly less than support for the current House impeachment inquiry alone.