GOP poll: Brower leads in key state Senate race

Wed, Aug 15, 2012 (7:34 a.m.)

UPDATE: I was, as Pavlov would have predicted, contacted by Sheila Leslie and her campaign team after I posted this item -- I was correct about a Democratic poll showing her ahead floating around. I have posted the memo from her pollster, but a serious caveat here despite some similarities: The only thing less helpful than a poll taken in July in a legislative race is one taken in June. And despite the Aug. 8 date on the polling memo, the Leslie poll is very old -- mid-June. I hope the donors this was passed around to know that....

In the race that may determine control of the state Senate, incumbent Greg Brower has a statistically insignificant lead over Sheila Leslie, but has much room to grow, a poll taken for his campaign late last month says.

The survey by experienced, reliable pollster Dave Sackett of The Tarrance Group indicates the contest is close, but strikingly concludes, "There is no reasonable path to victory for Leslie."

That surely overstates the case, right? If not, I'd say Michael Roberson should start decorating Bill Raggio's old office.

Here's the polling memo:





DATE: JULY 25, 2012


The Tarrance Group is pleased to present Brower for Nevada with the key findings from a survey of voter attitudes in the 15th State Senate District. These key findings are based on telephone interviews with N=303 “likely” registered voters throughout the district. Responses to this survey were gathered July 22-24, 2012 and the margin of error associated with a sample of this type is + 5.8% in 95 out of 100 cases.


➢ Greg Brower currently maintains a +3 point lead on the trial ballot test for the State Senate. Forty-five percent (45%) of district voters indicate they would vote for Brower, while forty-two percent (42%) indicate that they would vote for Democrat nominee Sheila Leslie. There are two percent (2%) who would vote for NOA, and 10% of district voters are undecided on the ballot test.

➢ The only reason that the ballot test is even close at all is based entirely on the fact that Leslie has higher name ID than Brower at this point in the race. Among those voters who “know both” candidates, Brower’s lead extends to +11 points, with Brower at 54% and Leslie at forty-three percent (43%) of the vote.

➢ Leslie’s name ID is up at sixty-eight percent (68%) among district voters, while Brower currently stands with forty-seven name awareness among voters across the district.

➢ All of the political environment and top-of-ticket- measures strongly favor Brower and the Republicans. Governor Sandoval stands with a very strong sixty-seven percent (67%) job approval rating among district voters, and Republicans also maintain a +7 point advantage on the generic ballot for the State Senate.

➢ The top-of-ticket also performs at a very high level for Republicans. Governor Romney is already at 52% of the vote and beating President Obama by +9 on the Presidential ballot test, and Senator Heller is already at 53% of the vote on the U.S. Senate ballot test and leading Berkley by +17 points.

➢ There is no reasonable path to victory for Leslie. As soon as Brower equalizes his name awareness with hers, his ballot strength will be up over 50%. All three of the Republican candidates – Romney, Heller, and Brower – maintain significant advantages on the ballot test among Independent voters.

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