CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The West Virginia Poll released Friday said a possible match-up for U.S. Senate next year between Second District Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito and Secretary of State Natalie Tennant would be close.
Rex Repass of R.L. Repass and Partners did the poll for the Charleston Daily Mail. Repass told MetroNews a hypothetical Capito-Tennant race would be in the single digits.
“Shelley Moore Capito has about a five percentage point lead,” he said. “The secretary of state certainly has high name recognition which certainly helps to move her poll numbers up.”
The poll shows Capito at 45 percent, Tennant at 40 percent with about 15 percent of those surveyed undecided. Capito has also announced her decision to run for the seat next year but Tennant has not.
Repass said the current closeness of a possible race between the two isn’t surprising at this point.
“You would expect a fairly close number at this point and time because the campaign has not started. Typically these type of poll numbers are based on name identification.”
Repass said his poll spoke with 400 likely voters by phone with a 4.9 percent margin of error.
The poll also asked questions on public education in West Virginia. Repass said most of those polled trust Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin on the issue more than state lawmakers. Tomblin shepherded an education reform bill through the legislature earlier this year.
The poll also asked for a confidence level in WVU football coach Dana Holgorsen. The results were good for the third-year head coach.
Repass said 25 percent have a high confidence in that ability and 40 percent have a somewhat high confidence.
“Sixty-five percent have confidence in his ability to lead the program. Mountaineer fans are supporting Coach Holgorsen,” Repass said.