The GOP firm JMC Analytics is out with a new poll of the Oct. 12 all-party primary for governor on behalf of the Louisiana Association of Health Plans, and after leaners are pushed, they show Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards in first place with 48% of the vote—just two points shy of the majority he’d need to avoid a November runoff. Frustratingly an underfunded Democrat, Oscar Dantzler, takes 2% of the vote, a showing that could make all the difference for Edwards next month.
JMC also finds wealthy businessman Eddie Rispone edging Rep. Ralph Abraham, a fellow Republican, 22-20 for the second place spot, making this the first poll to ever show Rispone leading Abraham. Last week, JMC released a survey for the media company Nexstar that found Edwards in first with 41%, while Abraham led Rispone 24-16 for second.
Abraham’s team responded to these unwelcome new numbers with a release proclaiming, “Don’t believe fake polls and failing campaigns,” but they didn’t provide any actual data to contradict JMC. However, Abraham’s own team has already found his position deteriorating since Rispone began bombarding the airwaves two months ago. Earlier this month, a Remington Research poll for Abraham showed him leading Rispone 27-19, the same margin that JMC found last week, but that was still a huge drop from the congressman’s 34-8 advantage in Remington’s June survey.
Rispone, who has been self-funding most of his campaign, held a massive $6.3 million to $1.4 million cash-on-hand lead over Abraham at the beginning of September, so even if JMC is off and Abraham is still ahead, that lead may not survive the next few weeks. To make matters tougher for Abraham, Rispone also went up with his first TV spot last week attacking the congressman, and Abraham has yet to hit back.
The RGA is doing what they can to make sure Edwards doesn’t win outright next month, and they’re out with another negative spot. The commercial once again faults Edwards over the condition of Louisiana’s economy and tries to tie him to national Democrats.
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