PubliCola commissioned a robopoll on the mayor's race last night.
Joe Mallahan leads with 36.5 percent.
Mike McGinn is at 30.1 percent.
33.5 percent are undecided.
We polled more than 700 likely voters; the poll has a margin of error of 3.7 percent. Obviously, while the numbers are close, they're better news for Mallahan—although, it's not the comfortable 16-point lead his internal polling was reportedly showing.
Here are some bullet points from the crosstabs:
- Mallahan leads among every age group except 50-64-year olds. He has a commanding lead (19 percent) among 65 and older (seniors), and a 5 percent lead among 18-34 year olds.
- Mallahan leads in the 11th, 34th, 36th, and 46th legislative districts (far Southeast Seattle, West Seattle, Ballard/Queen Anne, and North Seattle, respectively)
- McGinn leads in the 37th and 43rd (Southeast Seattle and Capitol Hill/Wallingford/U District)
- Mallahan leads among Nickels voters 41 percent to 22 percent, with 37 percent undecided
- 35 percent of those who said they voted for Mallahan in the primary are now either undecided or voting for McGinn
There's a red flag here for McGinn: The fact that he's losing in tunnel turf like the 34th and particularly the 36th, where he's down 41 to 28, shows that McGinn's tunnel position may not be as effective as he'd hoped. The 36th is a flaming liberal district (McGinn does better among libs—35 to 33 according to our poll, and he's winning the liberal 43rd), so the fact that he's not winning a very liberal district where the tunnel is a practical issue, shows that his tunnel position could actually be undermining him with voters who would otherwise be in his camp.
On a bad note for Mallahan (in comparison to McGinn): Mallahan's not holding on to his primary voters (keeping just 65 percent of them)—9 percent have shifted to McGinn, while 26 percent are now undecided. McGinn has retained 74 percent of his primary voters while only 5 percent have gone over to Mallahan. 21 percent are undecided.
Good Note for McGinn: He's winning the 37th. As we've noted before, in a tight race like this, the minority vote (which Nickels won in his nail-biter with Mark Sidran in 2001) could make the difference, though right now McGinn's lead here appears less significant given the votes he seems to be losing over the tunnel. (And footnote, he's only up in the 37th by three points.)
And, in fact, the 37th (and the 43rd) are the only districts McGinn's winning. If I were McGinn's consultant, I'd tell him he has to push out to more conservative districts. Lucky for him he's got the anti-tax message built in to his anti-tunnel rap. That may be his chance to break out into districts like the 46th in North Seattle.
And If I were Mallahan's consultant, I'd tell him to protect that turf (he's currently beating McGinn by 10 points in the 46th) by continuing to stress the general "I'm a good manager" message—or better yet, make it about McGinn and attack McGinn's tunnel position.
A bit about the poll: We used Precision Polling and their nifty new polling technology that allowed us to design our poll. Poll weighting (meaning, we took into account the discrepancy between the number of, say, young voters vs. older voters we were able to reach) was provided by WinPower Strategies. WinPower's John Wyble and Chris McCullough also helped us sort through some of the analysis.
And by the way, (sorry Mike) Joe is more popular with the ladies, winning 35 to 31.