Calls were placed to 374 adults who voted in the 2011 Republican primary. As many offices were up for election in 2011, we felt that this electorate was a rough approximation of the electorate likely to turn out this year, in which fewer races are up for grabs but the most prominent race on the ballot (the Senate contest) is more high profile. Respondents who did not state an inclination to vote in the primary or did not give a topline preference were not included in the survey. If a respondent stated a topline choice but did not complete the survey, data was derived for the other questions to the greatest extent possible from the voter file. Where that was not possible, responses were marked as "other." In keeping with RRH's philosophical mission to use as much concrete data instead of our own assumptions wherever possible, the only weighting of the data was for age, gender, and geography increasing the proportion of young and male voters in the sample to bring the sample more in line with projections for the Mississippi primary electorate, and decreasing the number of CD-4 voters, who were oversampled in the initial population.
|Sen. Thad Cochran||42%|
|State Sen. Chris McDaniel||41%|
Sen. Thad Cochran 42%
State Sen. Chris McDaniel 41%
Thomas Carey 6%
|Conservative but not Tea Party||57%|
|Neither Conservative nor Tea Party||16%|
The poll was weighted in three dimensions, age, gender, and geography:
CD-4 was upweighted slightly relative to its population due to the competitive congressional primary between Rep. Steven Pallazzo and ex-Rep. Gene Taylor, while CD-2 was downweighted due to the dramatically lower proportion of Republicans in the district. CD-1 was also downweighted because the voters in that district have been more likely to pull Democratic ballots due to continued Democratic identification among white voters that does not exist in the rest of the state.
Racial Data (derived from voter file)
As one would expect for a Republican primary electorate in Mississippi, the electorate is overwhelmingly white.
Toplines by age and gender:
|Candidate||Male (47%)||Female (53%)|
There is a very pronounced gender gap; male voters go strongly for McDaniel while female voters go strongly for Cochran.
|Candidate||Under 45 (14%)||45-64(42%)||65+ (44%)|
Young voters are McDaniel's strongest constituency; conversely, seniors are strongest for Cochran.
|Ideological Self-ID||Tea Party (27%)||Conservative non-TP(57%)||Not Conservative (16%)||Other (7%)|
As one would expect, Tea Party voters break overwhelmingly for McDaniel, while non-Tea Party voters break strongly for Cochran.
Due to the small percentage of nonwhite voters, racial crosstabs are not particularly informative.
We also asked how these voters would vote in November if a candidate they didn't vote for won the primary.
|Support R in Nov?||Overall||Cochran Voters (42%)||McDaniel Voters (41%)|
|Definitely support R||57%||56%||65%|
|Could support either||18%||21%||18%|
The data show that a significant percentage, about one in four, would at least consider voting for the Democratic nominee if their chosen candidate lost the primary. Cochran voters are only slightly more likely than McDaniel voters to consider crossing party lines in November.
|Geography||CD-1 (20%)||CD-2 (15%)||CD-3 (30%)||CD-4 (35%)|
Geography CD-1 (20%) CD-2 (15%) CD-3 (30%) CD-4 (35%)
Carey 5% 6% 6% 7%
Cochran 38% 40% 48% 38%
McDaniel 45% 50% 36% 40%
Undecided 13% 3% 10% 15%
Cochran's strongest area is the 3rd district, dominated by the upper-middle class suburban Rankin County.
RRH finds the race between Thad Cochran and Chris McDaniel close; indeed, we see the race close enough that the presence of unheralded third candidate Thomas Carey may throw the contest to a runoff on June 24. As expected, McDaniel's support comes from younger, male, and Tea Party voters, while Cochran does best among older, female, and non-Tea Party primary voters. Unlike all previous polls of the race, RRH finds the race so close, and spoiler Thomas Carey drawing enough votes, that we see that the possibility of a June 24 runoff is very real.
About Red Racing Horses & Contact Info:
Red Racing Horses (redracinghorses.com) is a collaborative, Republican-oriented blog focusing on horserace politics. We offer daily news updates on the American political landscape and stimulating discussion of upcoming elections. RRH is run by a team of eight volunteer hobbyists, and our website and polling are funded by generous donations from our readers. We have previously conducted polls of congressional elections in Louisiana and South Carolina, and Florida. RRH is not affiliated with any campaign or partisan organization. To contact Red Racing Horses about this poll, e-mail us at email@example.com.
1. There is a Republican primary on June 3rd for the US Senate seat in Mississippi. Are you likely to vote in it?
Press 1 if you are likely to vote in the Republican primary.
Press 2 if you are not likely to vote in the Republican primary.
2. Are you most likely to vote in the Republican Primary for Thomas Carey, Thad Cochran, or Chris McDaniel?
Press 1 if you are most likely to vote for Thomas Carey
Press 2 if you are most likely to vote for Thad Cochran
Press 3 if you are most likely to vote for Chris McDaniel
Press 4 if you are totally undecided
3. Do you consider yourself a Tea Party member or supporter?
Press 1 if you consider yourself a Tea Party member or supporter.
Press 2 if you consider yourself a conservative, but NOT a member or supporter of the Tea Party.
Press 3 if you do NOT consider yourself a conservative, a Tea Party member, or a Tea Party supporter.
4. For statistical purposes, please let us know your gender:
Press 1 if you are male
Press 2 if you are female
5. For statistical purposes, please let us know your age:
Press 1 if you are 18-44
Press 2 if you are 45-65
Press 3 if you are 65 plus.
6. If a candidate you DON'T vote for wins the Republican primary, how likely are you to support the Republican nominee in November?
Press 1 if you will support the Republican nominee regardless.
Press 2 if you could support either the Republican nominee or Democratic nominee if someone you don't vote for wins the Republican primary.
Press 3 if you will probably vote for the Democratic nominee if someone you don't vote for candidate wins the Republican primary.
Press 4 if you will probably not vote in November if someone you don't vote for wins the Republican primary
Appendix: Survey language: