Latest Survey of Public Opinion on US Senate MS GOP Primary Runoff

Thursday evening (June 5th) we conducted a statewide survey of GOP primary voters in Mississippi. We asked an equal number of Cochran and McDaniel supporters from the June 3rd Primary about their plans to vote in the runoff election, which candidate they planned to support and which candidate they thought would win. We surveyed 832 households with a MOE of +/-3.3%

Major Findings

  • At this point in the race, supporters of both candidates are energized and optimistic. 
    • Equal percentages plan to return to the polls for the runoff.
    • Equal percentages believe their candidate will win.
  • A weighted calculation of survey results shows McDaniel has a 3.0% lead over Cochran. This lead is within the survey’s margin of error.
Which candidate do you plan to support?
Thad Cochran 47.6%
Chris McDaniel 50.6%
Undecided 1.8%
Grand Total 100.0%

Important Points to Remember:

  • Different assumptions about gender and age mix of the June 23rd turnout will alter these results. The candidate support totals noted above are made from a weighted sample that assumes turnout at 53% women; 36% ages 65 and older; ages 18 to 64 at 64%.
  • The race is fluid and the election is more than two weeks away. In this unusual campaign, we don’t know if and when another bombshell will drop and how it would impact voters.
  • We surveyed only voters who participated in the June 3rd GOP primary. Mississippi law allows for anyone who didn’t vote in the June 3rd Democratic Primary to vote in the GOP Primary runoff.

Other Notes:

  1. These surveys include only landline phones.
  2. These surveys have a three-part screen for participation. We surveyed only phone households with a voter participating in all three of the 2008, 2010 and 2012 GOP primaries. We asked each participant if (s)he voted in the recent GOP Primary. We asked which candidate they had supported and continued the survey for only those who had cast their ballots for Cochran or McDaniel.
  3. The sample is 96% Caucasian, 2% African American and 2% other ethnicity. The survey oversamples women and older voters with weighting to produce more reliable results. 

The charts below are unweighted responses. We caution against drawing sweeping conclusions from demographic groups with a small subsample number. (Minority voters and all voters under age 45). 

Unweighted Toplines

Did you vote in the Republican Primary?
Q1 Primary # %
1 Yes 864 100%
Grand Total 864 100%
In politics, how do you describe yourself?
Q2 Party # %
3 Completely Independent 91 11%
4 Leaning Republican 221 26%
5 Mostly Republican 552 64%
Grand Total 864 100%
What is your age range?
Q3 Age # %
1 18 to 35 8 1%
2 36 to 45 23 3%
3 46 to 54 60 7%
4 55 to 64 172 20%
5 65 or older 601 70%
Grand Total 864 100%
What is your ethnicity?
Q4 Ethnicity # %
1 African American 16 2%
2 Caucasian or White 830 96%
3 Other 18 2%
Grand Total 864 100%
What is your gender?
Q5 Gender # %
1 Male 363 42%
2 Female 501 58%
Grand Total 864 100%
Which candidate did you support in the primary?
Q6 Primary Vote # %
2 Thad Cochran 432 50%
3 Chris McDaniel 432 50%
Grand Total 864 100%
How likely are you to vote in the runoff?
Q7 Voting Runoff # %
1 Definitely voting 840 97%
2 Probably vote 18 2%
3 Probably not vote 3 0%
4 Unsure 3 0%
Grand Total 864 100%
Which candidate do you plan to support?
Q8 Runoff Horserace # %
1 Thad Cochran 423 49%
2 Chris McDaniel 411 48%
3 Undecided 24 3%
Grand Total 858 100%
Who do you think will win?
Q9 Who will win? # %
1 Thad Cochran 430 50%
2 Chris McDaniel 434  50%
Grand Total 864 100%


Unweighted Crosstabs – By vote cast

Did you vote in the Republican Primary?
% Q6 Primary Vote    
Q1 Primary 2 Thad Cochran 3 Chris McDaniel Grand Total
1 Yes 100% 100% 100%
Grand Total 100% 100% 100%
In politics, how do you describe yourself?
% Q6 Primary Vote    
Q2 Party 2 Thad Cochran 3 Chris McDaniel Grand Total
3 Completely Independent 11% 10% 11%
4 Leaning Republican 23% 28% 26%
5 Mostly Republican 66% 62% 64%
Grand Total 100% 100% 100%
What is your age range?
% Q6 Primary Vote    
Q03 Age 2 Thad Cochran 3 Chris McDaniel Grand Total
1 18 to 35 1% 0% 1%
2 36 to 45 2% 3% 3%
3 46 to 54 6% 8% 7% 
4 55 to 64 19% 21% 20%
5 65 or older  72%  67% 70% 
Grand Total 100%  100%  100% 
What is your ethnicity?
% Q6 Primary Vote    
Q4 Ethnicity 2 Thad Cochran 3 Chris McDaniel Grand Total
1 African American 2% 2% 2%
2 Caucasian or White 97% 96% 96%
3 Other 2% 3% 2%
Grand Total 100% 100% 100%
What is your gender?
% Q6 Primary Vote    
Q5 Gender 2 Thad Cochran 3 Chris McDaniel Grand Total
1 Male 38% 46% 42%
2 Female 62% 54% 58%
Grand Total 100% 100% 100%

How likely are you to vote in the runoff?
Q7 Voting Runoff 98% 97% 97%
2 Probably vote 2% 2% 2%
3 Probably not vote 0% 0% 0%
4 Unsure 0% 0% 0%
Grand Total 100% 100% 100%
Which candidate do you plan to support?
Q8 Runoff Horserace 2 Thad Cochran 3 Chris McDaniel Grand Total
1 Thad Cochran 96% 2% 49%
2 Chris McDaniel 1% 95% 48%
3 Undecided 3% 3% 3%
Grand Total 100% 100% 100%
Who do you think will win?
Q9 Who will win? 2 Thad Cochran 3 Chris McDaniel Grand Total
1 Thad Cochran 93% 6% 50%
2 Chris McDaniel 7% 94% 50%
Grand Total 100% 100% 100%

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