Monday, August 14, 2006

Dittman Gubernatorial Poll Says It's Tony Knowles vs. Sarah Palin In November's Alaska General Election


On Monday, August 14th, independent Alaskan pollster Dave Dittman appeared on KFQD conservative talk show host Dan Fagan’s program to discuss his new poll of the upcoming Alaska primary election. His poll, conducted from Tuesday August 8th until Sunday August 13th, 2006, focused on Republican candidates for governor and lieutenant governor. Here are the results (Sarah Palin pictured above left, courtesy of Anchorage Daily News):

Special Note To Alaskan Readers: The Alaska primary election takes place on Tuesday August 22nd, 2006. If you're not sure where to vote, visit the Alaska Division of Elections website for guidance.

Statewide:

Sarah Palin 40%
John Binkley 29%
Frank Murkowski (incumbent) 17%
Unsure 14%

Note: “Unsure” may mean either genuinely undecided or, in rare cases, the respondent may have expressed preference for a different candidate.

Special Update (August 15th): A PDF copy of Dittman's poll is now available on the Anchorage Daily News website. Consequently, I've updated this post to correct Murkowski's result in the Southeast, and to add the specific results for the Rural areas. I also changed the word "undecided" to "Unsure" to reflect the syntax used in the report. Dave Dittman is the type of guy who, if you ask him what time it is, tends to wander off topic and start telling you how to build a clock - he can be hard to follow, at times.

Dittman also polled by region. Take note that 70% of the state’s population lives in South Central Alaska, including Anchorage.

Anchorage Bowl:

Sarah Palin 44%
John Binkley 24%
Frank Murkowski 19%

South Central Alaska outside of Anchorage: (Sarah Palin lives in Wasilla, located in the Matanuska Valley)

Sarah Palin 63%
John Binkley 13%
Frank Murkowski 12%

Southeast Alaska:

John Binkley 46%
Frank Murkowski 20% 26%
Sarah Palin 13%

Fairbanks and Central Alaska: (John Binkley lives in Fairbanks and previously lived in Bethel)

John Binkley 45%
Sarah Palin 19%
Frank Murkowski 11%

Rural (The "Bush"):

Sarah Palin 44%
John Binkley 36%
Frank Murkowski 15%

Analysis: Sarah Palin’s strength in more-populated areas overcomes John Binkley’s strength is less populated areas, explaining the statewide advantage for Palin.

Dittman also discussed further analysis. He further allocated the Unsure voters based upon demographic characteristics (he did not disclose the specific methodology), extrapolating the following statewide results:

Sarah Palin 46%
John Binkley 34%
Frank Murkowski 20%

Dittman then extrapolated who Frank Murkowski’s supporters would choose if he wasn’t in the race. Sarah Palin would receive more of the benefit. Dittman extrapolated the following results:

Sarah Palin 46%
John Binkley 31%
Unsure 23%


Dittman then discussed the Republican lieutenant governor race. He revealed that Sean Parnell and Jerry Ward are in a virtual dead heat. However, Dittman followed up by saying that a Palin-Parnell ticket would be more successful against presumptive Democratic nominee Tony Knowles (pictured at left, courtesy of KTUU Channel 2) than a Palin-Ward ticket. He opined that a Palin-Parnell ticket might coast to an easy victory over Tony Knowles.

Dittman did not poll the Democratic race because Tony Knowles enjoys a huge lead over Eric Croft.

Previous polls by Rasmussen, Craciun and Ivan Moore show similar results. Only two prior Hellenthal polls show different results; the Hellenthal polls, paid for by John Binkley, actually show Binkley with a narrow lead of Sarah Palin, although both put Murkowski equally in last place. But with four separate polls giving Sarah Palin a clear lead, we can now discount the Hellenthal polls and declare Sarah Palin the presumptive Republican nominee.

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