Polls show competing results in governor’s race

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The race for Kansas governor is now really on.

Results from new polls – one from a liberal firm and another from a conservative firm – showed different results in the race for Kansas governor.

The poll by the Democratic firm showed Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly ahead. The survey by the Republican pollster showed Republican Derek Schmidt in the lead.

In both polls, the incumbent governor was under 50% going into her reelection.

Poll results obtained from a Republican source not involved in the governor’s race showed Republican Attorney General Derek Schmidt leading Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly, 44% to 40% with 16% of the voters undecided.

Laura Kelly

The poll by Remington Research Group of Kansas City, Missouri showed Kelly with an approval rating of 46% while 39% disapproved an 15% were undecided.

The Remington poll showed that Kelly’s strength may be Schmidt’s weakness.

The governor polled best in the 3rd Congressional District where she got 49% from the voters in an area won twice by Democratic Congresswoman Sharice Davids and has been trending bluer in recent years.

Schmidt got 36% in the 3rd Congressional District, by far his worst results in the poll.

Three years ago, Schmidt lost Johnson County in a relatively easy re-election bid against Douglas County defense lawyer Sarah Swain, who was repudiated by her own party for a poster she kept in her office of Wonder Woman lassoing a cop around the neck.

Derek Schmidt

The attorney general’s strength was in the heavily Republican 1st Congressional District where he was getting support fro 56% of those surveyed. Kelly was drawing support from 29% of the voters there.

The governor received support from 42% of the voters in the 2nd District compared to 41% for Schmidt. The 2nd District includes Schmidt’s hometown of Independence.

The attorney general led in the 4th District in the Wichita area with 45% to 37% for Kelly and 17% uncertain.

The Remington poll of 1,101 likely general election voters – done Sept. 7 through Sept. 9 – had a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

The poll funder was not disclosed although it was done by Remington Research Group, which is owned by Kansas City-based Axiom Strategies.

Axiom was started by Missouri political operative Jeff Roe.

It was not known how many Democrats, Republicans and independents were sampled in the Remington poll, weightings that could have influenced the survey’s outcome.

Democratic critics privately questioned whether the poll oversampled the actual number of Kansas Republicans, giving Schmidt a boost in the results.

A separate poll done for Emily’s List showed the opposite results.

The poll done by Clarity Campaign Labs of Washington D.C. showed Kelly with a 3 percentage point lead over Schmidt, with 47% backing the governor and 44% supporting the attorney general.

The survey also showed Kelly with an approval rating of 53% while her disapproval was at about 41% and 6% was undecided.

The Emily’s List poll of 810 registered voters – done Sept. 13 through Sept. 15 – had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.45 percentage points.

The polling memo from Emily’s List also didn’t reveal how many voters from each party were sampled either.

The Remington poll was deployed using a mix of interactive voice response and live calls, the source said.

The Emily’s List poll used interactive voice response to landline phones.

The poll results were released as the governor’s race is just starting to heat up.

A little more than a week ago, Kelly’s campaign started running ads on Facebook, raising money under the headline “Stop Republican Extremists” with a back-and-white photo of Schmidt.

Meanwhile, Schmidt has been running ads on Faceboook grouping Kelly with President Joe Biden, who the Remington Poll showed is not very popular in Kansas.

Earlier this week, Schmidt led an effort urging Kelly to send aid to the border to help with security.

As it turned out, National Guard troops had already been there since last fall although very few seemed to know.

They were sent to the border back in October without a lot of public notice.