The Dallas Morning News is releasing its final poll in the races for Texas governor and U.S. senator. The numbers show Republicans maintaining solid leads since the paper’s last survey two weeks ago.
In the governor’s race, Gov. Rick Perry (R) leads Tony Sanchez (D) by a 50-38 margin. Perry is receiving 13% of black and 22% of Hispanic support, while Sanchez is at 26% among whites. Even factoring for higher black and Hispanic turnout, a Democrat needs to win at least 37% of the white vote to win statewide — Sanchez has not topped the mid 20’s in any public poll taken since the Democratic primary.
In the U.S. Senate race, Atty. Gen. John Cornyn (R) leads Democrat Ron Kirk
(D) by a 50-41 margin. Kirk is doing better with whites (30%) but Cornyn is at 33% among Hispanics.
The only contest in play at this point is the lieutenant governor’s race, where Land Commissioner David Dewhurst (R) leads former Comptroller John Sharp (D) by the three-point margin of error. The lieutenant governor is the most powerful position in Texas’ system of government because he is the presiding office of the Texas Senate — he determines committee assignments and which bills make the Senate’s agenda. For that reason, Perry is openly appealing in the last few days that voters who support him also vote for Dewhurst so that their vote for governor isn’t cancelled out. (Perry narrowly beat Sharp for this office four years ago and they’ve hated each other ever since.)