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Thursday, April 26, 2018

Senate race polls are useless

The Politico headline read, "Poll: Coal baron Blankenship fading in W.Va. Senate primary."

Really? Reading the numbers, I could not make that conclusion.

The poll numbers are Patrick Morrisey 24%, Evan Jenkins 20%, Don Blankenship 12% -- and undecided 39%.

The poll claims "a margin of error of 4.9 percentage points."


No one is going to win the primary with 24%, or in keeping with that margin of error, 29%.

There are too many undecided voters to use this poll to predict anything other than one of them will win the primary, but we already knew that.

The news is that it still is anyone's game. Not exactly Page One news.

A Fox News poll had it 25% Jenkins, Morrisey 21%, and Blankenship 16%. That poll had the undecided at 24%, still too large to tell you what will happen in the primary. And Fox News did not include independents, who can vote in the Republican primary. They can swing the primary.

The significance of the Fox News poll is that the network will use it to select who will be in its May 1 debate. That debate likely will decide the race for many. Really, it is a three-way race.

But the real story is not that Blankenship is fading, but that 39% (or 24%) of those who agreed to be polled marked themselves as undecided.

So many people are marked as undecided that they invalidate the polls.

We do not know if Blankenship is fading. That 39% (or 24%) may be people who do not want to tell a stranger that they are voting for him.

Or that 39% (or 24%) may be like me, trying to choose between Morrisey and Jenkins as they try to get the candidate with the best shot at knocking off Joe Manchin.

Or it may be that the undecided won't vote. Take them out and the GOPAC numbers are 40% Morrisey, 35% Jenkins, and 20% Blankenship with others splitting the remaining 5%.

But who knows?

The only thing the poll showed is no one knows who Republicans will nominate in the primary.

But we will find out on May 8, won't we? I probably will make up my mind by then.


  1. What choices: A turn-coat liberal; a D.C. swamper who never supported Trump; or a murderer. Joe is safe.

    1. Identify yourself. Do you live in West Virginia? If so, where? If not, stay the fuck out of our election.

    2. Like it or not, these Senate races are national, since holding the Senate is absolutely essential to POTUS-Trump getting his appointments (especially judicial appointments) through, even if it means McConnell and his swampy ilk are running the show. So those of us who live in the other 49 states have an interest -- and have a stake -- in what you Mountain Staters do. So we all have an opinion. On behalf of the rest of the country, please please please choose wisely. No Roy Moores and no Flakey Jeffs, if you can, but even a Marco Rubio would be a hundred times better than the Dem alternative.

    3. Z - what do you care where I live? You have commented many times on House and Senate races in other states. And elections in other countries. So please, please, spare me the stay out of our election nonsense.

      I now await for Surber to condemn your language on his "family friendly" blog.

      And btw, I do live in W.Va. Richmond to be exact.

    4. Oh, and TK, I am a fully engaged Constitionalist and will definitely choose wisely. But I must say again, Bozo The Clown could beat Status Quo. No one I talk to is voting for Joe. Morissey seems to have the biggest killer instinct, ad wise, right now.

    5. Wow - Z - you are smart on your geography. A "Constitionalist" who supports Trump. No if there ever was an oxymoron, that beats them all. Congrats.

    6. Mr Richmond,keep pointing that gun at yourself and with luck it will go off.

    7. Can you provide any links to any of your descriptions of the candidates being what you say they are.Sort of like saying that your a dips**t.

    8. Don't have to provide links. Just watch the tv ads. As for the gun remark, way to keep it classy, but at least I am exercising my Second AMendment Rights.

    9. If you make decisions on political ads,you have a real problem,which means your whole reason for being here is to muddy the water.I think this still applies " stay the fuck out of our election"

  2. I just hope the undecideds don’t just show up and vote for anyone. The worst of the three could then win. Or will the Dems flood the republican primary to vote for Blankenship?

    1. In W.Va., registered Dems can't vote on Republican tickets in primaries.

    2. Mr Surber said independents can vote as Rep,so yes the Dems are there hiding under that classification.

    3. Who is to say Repubs are not hiding as Indies and voting in Democrat primary?

    4. Waste of time,I'd say.