Public Policy Polling’s newest Maine survey finds that after three televised debates, the race for governor is still a very tight contest between incumbent Paul LePage and Democrat Mike Michaud. LePage and Michaud each have 40%, with Eliot Cutler trailing at 17%.
Key findings from the survey include:
-Paul LePage continues to be one of the most unpopular governors in the country. Only 43% of voters have a favorable opinion of him to 53% who have a negative one. His numbers among independents are particularly low with only 34% seeing him favorably to 60% who have an unfavorable opinion.
-The biggest factor in this race remaining so close is that Cutler, consistently in a distant third place, is continuing to siphon off enough of the anti-LePage vote to keep the contest in toss-up range.
-Among the voters who support Cutler, 55% say Michaud would be their second choice to just 35% who say LePage would be their second choice. In a head to head contest, Michaud would have a five point lead over LePage, 49 to 44. This is supported by the fact that 73% of Cutler supporters have a negative view of LePage.
-Michaud has the highest favorability rating of the candidates in the race at 47%, followed by LePage at 43%, and Cutler at 39%.
-Michaud leads with: independents (40% Michaud, 28% LePage, 29% Cutler); women (43% Michaud 37% LePage and 17% Cutler); and young people (47% Michaud, 43% LePage 10% Cutler).
Trailing by 23 points with only 11 days to go until the election, there is virtually no way Cutler can overtake LePage and Michaud. But by splitting the anti-LePage vote, the support Cutler is pulling from Michaud could be just enough to re-elect LePage in this razor-thin contest.
PPP interviewed 660 likely voters on October 22nd and 23rd. The margin of error for the poll is +/-3.6%. This survey was conducted on behalf of Maine Conservation Voters Action Fund.
Full results here