Kilgore Leading by 10 Percent in WSLS Poll

SurveyUSA conducted a statewide poll for WSLS-TV in Roanoke. Based on the responses of 493 voters, with a margin of error of 4.5 percent, the survey found:

Kilgore…..46 percent
Kaine…….36 percent
Potts……. 6 percent

Delving into the details, there were a number of interesting findings. The gender gap lives… Kilgore led Kaine among men by 19 percent, but only 3 percent among women. But Republicans are making inroads among minorities… Kilgore performed respectably among blacks, logging 23 percent, and extraordinarily well among Hispanics, racking up 52 percent, the same as whites. (Given the small number of Hispanics in the survey, however, there may be a fairly large margin of error in that particular number.)

The more educated the voter, the more likely he or she was to prefer Kaine, who actually topped Kilgore among voters with graduate degrees. Likewise, voters from the “Northeast” part of the state (I presume that includes Northern Virginia) preferred Kaine by a 8 percent margin, while Kilgore trounced Kaine in his own backyard (Central Virginia) by a 25 percent margin.

Potts, at this point, does not seem to be a major factor, draining 5 percent of the Republican vote, 4 percent of the Democratic vote and 11 percent of the independent vote. By ideology, Potts pulls mainly from self-described “moderates” (7 percent) and “liberals” (7 percent) but few “conservatives” (3 percent).

Share this article


(comments below)


(comments below)


  1. Jim said: “Kilgore performed respectably among blacks, logging 23 percent”

    Exactly the reason why many in the VDP are cynically hoping Baskerville takes her sacrificial place on the ticket. That corrects that problem for you – and then some.

  2. Barnie Day Avatar
    Barnie Day

    Jim, check the numbers in your post. I’ve never seen a poll with a 1.5 percent margin of error. This must be a typo.

  3. Will Vehrs Avatar
    Will Vehrs

    I think the margin of error was 4.5%.

    We’re all obsessing over this poll because we see so few of them. We’re the junkies who live for this stuff; the vast majority start paying attention after the Buena Vista Labor Day parade.

    Spin the results any way you like. It’s better to be ahead than behind, but I’m not reading too much into it.

  4. Phil Rodokanakis Avatar
    Phil Rodokanakis

    What’s amazing about this poll is that Potts is drawing 6% of the vote. Who are these people? I’ve got a used car I need to sell ASAP..

  5. Jim Bacon Avatar
    Jim Bacon

    Barnie and Will, the margin of error is indeed 4.5 percent. The correct figure was hard to read on the survey’s web page, but now that I go back and double check, I see that you’re quite right.

  6. Sorry…the earlier post needed some editing. Anyway:

    What I found most interesting is that Potts pulled an equal number of supporters from self-described “liberals” as he did from “moderates” (and twice as many as from “conservatives”).

    Yes, this sample size wasn’t huge, and I’m very interested in seeing how these numbers hold up as we see more polling.

    BUT….this does lend some credence to the theory that Potts will take more votes from Kaine than he will take from Kilgore. After all, those liberal voters would be Kaine’s in a two-way race.

    And with Virginia being a center-right state anyway, Kaine can’t afford to lose any of those votes on the left. The right is going to stick with the only taxpayer-friendly candidate: Jerry Kilgore.

    Also note that these overall poll numbers are pretty much in line with the first two polls released in the last four months or so. So Kilgore isn’t losing ground, despite an unrelenting assault from the left and a supposed “split” within his own party.

    And need I say: forty-six percent is a big number in a three-way race.

    Will’s right, though: this is interestingly mostly because we’re junkies. There’s a long time until Election Day. But I’d rather be in Kilgore’s position than Kaine’s.

  7. Ok everybody, let’s all take a deep breath –

    Demographic breakdowns in 4.5% margin of error polls are WORTHLESS. The margin of error, if you break these polls down by race, gender, liberal/conservate, starts to approach a laughable 15%. So forget it.

  8. Paul, don’t discount the polling so quick … When I read through the polls, I said, “Wow! Potts is impacting Kaine votes.”

    No spin zone: That’s the bottom line.

    Kaine needs Warner’s moderate GOP votes to win. After all, it’s a Red state. I only expect Kilgore only to get stronger, unless something earth shattering happens. As for Tim Kaine’s 36-percent polling, his numbers are simply terrible — Tim needs to change his campaign manager before it’s too late.

    If the statewide election were held today — Dems would lose GA seats big time.

    If the Russ Potts campaign consistently reminds voters that he sided with Gov. Mark Warner and Democrats to raise state taxes, I say Democrats and Tim Kaine will be crying after the November election.

  9. Steve:

    No I agree with you on that. I was just saying that the demographic breakdowns aren’t extremely reliable. The poll itself is probably fine.

Leave a Reply