Republican candidates for Arizona governor

The republican candidates for Arizona governor spoke and answered questions during the monthly SaddleBrooke Republican Club meeting on May 14. The candidates running are, from left to right, Ken Bennett, Doug Ducey, Christine Jones, Al Melvin, Frank Riggs, and Scott Smith.

Randy Metcalf/The Explorer

A Tale of Two Polls

Two recent polls have different pictures of the six-way GOP gubernatorial race, which features Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett, Arizona Treasurer Doug Ducey, attorney Christine Jones, former Mesa Mayor Scott Smith, former California congressman Frank Riggs and disgraced former Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas.

One survey, released on Monday, July 14, by political consultant Chuck Coughlin’s HighGround organization, shows that 45 percent of primary voters were undecided. Among those primary voters who had made up their minds: 17 percent supported Ducey, 15 percent supported Jones, 10 percent supported Smith, 4 percent supported Bennett, 3 percent supported Thomas and 2 percent supported Riggs.

“We believe the results show that the Republican primary is a wide open race between the top three candidates—Ducey, Jones and Smith,” said Highground’s Paul Bentz.

The poll surveyed 400 likely Republican primary voters between July 10-12 and had a margin of error of 4.9 percent.

Meanwhile, Veterans for a Strong America, a dark-money group that has targeted Jones with negative campaign ads, released a survey showing that just 22 percent of voters were undecided.

The VSA poll showed Ducey with 33 percent of the voters; Jones with 21 percent; Smith with 13 percent; Bennett with 12 percent; Thomas with 7 percent; and Riggs with 1 percent.

The VSA poll news release did not include any details about methodology, but the group has ties to Sean Noble, an Arizona political operative and dark-money champion who is supporting Ducey.

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