Cruz Leads Dewhurst in Senate Race – Or Does He?

Politico reports that a new poll shows Ted Cruz now leading David Dewhurst 47-38 percent.  One taint is that the poll was commissioned by a Cruz-affiliated group, although Columbus, Ohio-based Wenzel Strategies has been accurate in recent surveys in other states. The Dewhurst camp counters with its own poll showing their candidate leading 50-42 percent.

Do these polls matter? Does a strong poll showing create a bandwagon effect with undecided voters? I haven’t seen any data on that question, but perhaps our more politically-astute FrontBurnerians have.


  • Ket

    I have no idea who would be better, but Dewie’s adds attacking clients of Cruz’s firm have made it clear that I will vote for Ted Cruz or the dead possum. Probably the dead possum, but certainly not Dewie.

  • Doug


    PPP issued an independent poll today showing Cruz with a 5pt lead. Look at the internals, the people that count in a runoff are people that are excited to go vote. There is a huge lead for Cruz. A runoff in late July will take excited, motivated voters to win, and Cruz has that in spades.

  • Avid Reader

    Polls are beyond dumb. Why should anyone care what hundreds/thousands/etc of other people say/think? Wick’s question is a good one. Is there anyone out there dumb enough to be peer pressured into voting one way because it’s “popular” in a poll? Pretty sure these polling consultants are well aware of how they can skew any result with the changing, deletion, addition of one single word; and do this on a regular basis. Not to mention the countless other variables involved. Any campaign can get a poll to combat the findings of a different poll. They can also selectively use info out a single poll to point out their view is right when the rest of the poll says nothing of the sort. Both parties are guilty of manipulating these idiotic polls to their advantage in the snippet media war on a daily basis. Look at the Wisconsin recall exit polls…not that exit polls matter in any way to anyone other than the poor reporters on air having to rehash the same info 900 times in a couple hours…but wow were they spot on.

  • Jackson

    @Avid Reader, polls are not “beyond dumb.” They are how the sense of the electorate gets measured. While they are not the end-all or be-all (only votes are), a professionally done poll, taking the plus/minus into consideration, can indeed capture an electorate’s overall thinking at the time the poll is conducted; a snapshot of a moment in time. Doug’s point that the internals in the PPP poll show greater motivation on the part of Cruz supporters is crucial, given the weird, late July runoff date. For whatever anecdotal value it is worth, my repub friends generally support Dewhurst but don’t seem particularly enamored with the guy.

  • Arec Barrwin

    You can trust PPP and it shows Cruz in the lead. Incidentally, if you go back and review my prior post several months ago on this race (Dewhurst was erroneously reporting that Leppert was he strongest challenger), I stated that if Cruz got into the runoff, he would win.

    Once again, I’m correct.

    Incidentally, I also predicted in 2008 that Wick would retract his support of Obama. Perhaps I should change my name to Nostradamus.

    Here’s my Presidential pick – Romney in a landslide. Except for Truman, no President has EVER won re-election with a Gallup job approval of less than 50% on election day. Obama is at 45% now, and the unemployment numbers will get worse, not better, before election day. On election day, Obama’s job approval will probably be around 41%, and means a catastrophic loss.

  • mike

    As someone who has managed “big-time” campaigns, good polling numbers this late provide two huge energisers: 1) volunteers become more enthusiastic, and 2) fund raising becomes exponentialy easier. Folks love to pay to get on (late) a winning bandwagon.


  • Amy S

    Wait, this is the race for the Republican nominee for the Senate race, right? Not the final vote. Or did I miss something?

  • Whenever you see Ron Paul and Cathie Adams and Sarah Palin and FreedomWorks endorse the same candidate, you should pause and pay attention because it means a “libertarian” religious right alliance is forming and that can be quite potent in a Texas GOP primary.

    Ted Cruz is benefiting from that.

    Not only that Kelly Shackleford and Ed Meese both endorsed Ted Cruz. George Will pumps him up.

    It is hard to win against all that. The Ron Paulers are nothing to sniff at in Texas, he got 12% of the vote; Paul’s voters are also highly motivated. In a close GOP primary race, 1-2% will make the difference.

    “Texas Senate primary gets hot as Cruz upset brews”

  • wayne thorburn

    Doesn’t it all boil down to one simple question? Do we REALLY need another over-65 Anglo male in the United States Senate? If Dewhurst wins, he’d be 72 years old when trying to seek his SECOND term!