Sunday, November 5, 2017
Loudonville, NY. Democrat Ralph Northam and Republican Ed Gillespie are locked in a tight race to be Virginia’s next governor. Heading into election day, Northam holds a narrow three-point lead, 43-40 percent, according to a New York Times Upshot/Siena College Research Institute poll of likely Virginia voters released today. By a small 43-34 percent margin, Virginians think the state is on the right track. While 39 percent of likely voters approve of the job President Donald Trump is doing, 51 percent disapprove, including a plurality of independent voters.
“This is a classic barnburner election that will have both candidates and campaigns working hard until the polls close Tuesday night,” said Siena College Poll Director Don Levy. “Northam and Gillespie are both strong with their bases: Gillespie has the support of 88 percent of Republicans while Northam is supported by 89 percent of Democrats. Independents are evenly divided, giving Gillespie an ever-so-slight one-point edge, 38-37 percent.
“There is a traditional gender gap, with Northam leading among women by 13 points and Gillespie leading with men by nine points. Gillespie leads with white voters 48-37 percent, while Northam has a huge 79-4 percent lead with black voters,” Levy said. “Gillespie has a small three-point edge with voters 65 and older. Northam has a similar narrow lead among voters 35 to 64 and has a very big 51-20 percent lead with voters under 35. Northam leads big in NoVa and comfortably in the Richmond area. Gillespie has a wide lead in the west, while the central part of the state and Tidewater region are closely divided.
“Turnout, turnout, turnout. Whichever campaign does a better job of mobilizing their voters and getting them to the polls on Tuesday is likely to be the campaign celebrating Tuesday night,” Levy said.
# # #
This New York Times Upshot/Siena College survey was conducted October 29-November 2, 2017 by telephone calls to 985 likely Virginia voters. Calls were made to a stratified weighted sample of voters from the L-2 Voter list via both land and cell phones. A likely-to-vote probability was computed for each respondent based on both their stated likelihood to vote as well as by virtue of the imputation of a turnout probability score based on past voting behavior applied to their specific voting history or overridden if they had already voted in which case their voting probability was 100%. This probability to vote was applied as a weight along with a weight that considered party, age, region, education, gender and race. This poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.0 percentage points. The Siena College Research Institute, directed by Donald Levy, Ph.D., conducts political, economic, social and cultural research primarily in NYS. SCRI, an independent, non-partisan research institute, subscribes to the American Association of Public Opinion Research Code of Professional Ethics and Practices. For more information, please call Don Levy at 518-783-2901. Survey cross-tabulations and frequencies can be found at: www.Siena.edu/SCRI/SNY. This collaboration between New York Times Upshot and the Siena College Research Institute is dedicated to transparency and welcomes any requests for data as well as discussion of methodology.