Posted by Ashley Houghton on July 08, 2020 at 2:07 PM

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

Press Contact: Ashley Houghton
ahoughton@fairvote.org 
301-793-6604

Ranked Choice Survey of Maine Republicans in CD-2: Dale Crafts’ Lead Is Enhanced by Strong 2nd Choice Position

Survey indicates stronger support by Republicans for Donald Trump than Susan Collins and support for VP Mike Pence as 2024 presidential candidate

Takoma Park, MD; July 8, 2020 – FairVote, a nonpartisan organization that advocates for electoral reform in the United States, released results of a SurveyUSA poll of Maine CD-2 registered Republicans today. Maine Republicans in the state's second congressional district favor former state legislator Dale Crafts over former gubernatorial spokesperson Adrienne Bennett in a tight ranked choice voting contest, with the GOP’s 2018 U.S. Senate nominee Eric Brakey trailing both as a first choice and second choice candidate. Adrienne Bennett still has a path to victory if she secures 75% of Eric Brakey voters' second choices.

Despite significant opposition to ranked choice voting (one tied to local party leaders’ opposition, in contrast to growing national cross-partisan support), a large majority of surveyed Republicans (68%) report ranking candidates is “very easy” or “easy”,  as opposed to 12% finding it “very hard.” In addition, a plurality of respondents (48%) think it important that the nominee earn a majority in their primary. All Maine voters will cast RCV ballots this November in elections for U.S. Senate, U.S. House and potentially president.

The poll also found former governor Paul LePage to be heavily favored if seeking to return to his office in 2022, that President Donald Trump commands stronger support than Sen. Susan Collins, and that Vice-President Mike Pence would be favored in first choices and ranked choice voting in a 2024 Republican presidential primary. While leading with only 37% in first choices, Pence wins by landslide when paired against Ted Cruz,Nikki Haley, Marco Rubio, Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr.

A majority of Republican primary voters oppose voting by mail, with nearly four in five planning to vote in person. Most also oppose ranked choice voting and do not plan to indicate a second choice even if that decision could allow their last place choice to defeat their second choice.

An analysis of the poll, including an innovative feature allowing users to interact with the CD2 and 2024 presidential preference data, can be found here.

“We have seen at least fifty House or Gubernatorial primary races this year where a candidate won with less than 50% support,” added Rob Richie, CEO and President of FairVote. “We’re encouraged by the strides Mainers have made to ensure election outcomes more closely mirror the candidates voters support.”

Rated as one of the nation’s most reliable pollsters by FiveThirtyEight.com, SurveyUSA interviewed 900 adults believed to be registered Republicans from Maine's 2nd US Congressional District. Of the confirmed 2nd district Republicans, 604 were determined by SurveyUSA to be likely to vote on or before the 07/14/20 Republican primary deadline. Nearly three-quarters of these voters are over 50 years old.

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FairVote is a nonpartisan champion of electoral reforms that give voters greater choice, a stronger voice, and a representative democracy that works for all Americans. 

 

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