Poll: Perry nears majority in GOP governor's race

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by BRAD WATSON / WFAA-TV

wfaa.com

Posted on February 10, 2010 at 8:17 PM

DALLAS — Another statewide poll is out in the race of the Republican nomination for governor, and incumbent Rick Perry will likely be pleased.

This was a telephone interview survey, which is considered good methodology, taken late last week of 400 likely Republican primary voters. It was sponsored by the Texas Credit Union League.

In other recent polls, Perry hasn't been able to claim a majority, which would result in a runoff with the second-place candidate. But he does come close in this survey.

It shows Perry comfortably ahead with 49 percent support. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison has 27 percent and Republican activist Debra Medina was favored by 19 percent.

This poll suggests Perry and Medina gaining, with Hutchison stuck in the roughly 30 percent range.

Still, Perry doesn't have the support to win outright, indicating the race could still go to a runoff. And on that question in this poll, Perry would clobber Hutchison in a runoff, 58 to 34 percent.

With early voting starting next Tuesday, Perry's challenge is to find enough voters to win outright, while Hutchison's strategy is to survive a Medina challenge to get into a runoff and reload.

This Credit Union poll also surveyed likely Democratic voters. In that survey, former Houston mayor Bill White has a majority, with 51  percent over hair care products mogul Farouk Shami,  who came in with just 19 percent support.

E-mail bwatson@wfaa.com

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