By Chelene Nightingale, Reporter
Some Republican Governor candidates may have celebrated while others may have been disappointed on Thursday, April 13, when the Emerson College Poll was released.
Emerson Polling is considered one of the most reliable pollsters with a strong A- rating from the polling analyst tech company FiveThirtyEight. The last major poll for the Kentucky Governor’s Race was from the equally respected Mason-Dixon Poll which published its findings in January.
Back in January, Daniel Cameron held a 26% commanding lead over Kelly Craft. However, with Craft’s aggressive advertising and in-person campaigning, she has tightened the gap. Meanwhile, Cameron may have lost the momentum from his prominent Trump endorsement so he now leads with only a mere 6%. Both State Auditor Mike Harmon and Somerset Mayor Alan Keck lost some traction since the last major poll; in contrast, both Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles and ex-attorney Eric Deters gained some ground. But examining the current polling numbers, the primary race, with just 4 weeks remaining, is between Cameron and Craft. The current Attorney General still leads with voter favorability over the former U.S. Ambassador. 63% of registered voters responded with strong likability for Cameron while just 47% gave Craft the same likability factor.
Regardless of who wins the Republican primary on May 16, polls still reflect the Democrat incumbent, Andy Beshear, winning the general election in November.
Jobe Publishing, Inc. (JPI) created the Governor Series to give readers a closer look at each GOP candidate for the Commonwealth’s highest office in order for readers to select the candidate that fits their criteria. Democrats are already aware of their main candidate; however, there are two minor challengers.
Former Republican governor candidate Peppy Martin, currently registered Democrat, supports legalizing casino gambling and cannabis. She also advocates for ending state income tax. Martin, whose legal first name is Josephine, has also criticized Governor Beshear’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic. In an interview on public radio, Martin said, “I think some of his measures have been too draconian for Kentuckians. On the other side, like the marijuana thing, they’ve been half-baked.”
Beshear’s second challenger is Geoff Young. Young was the democrat challenger in the 6th Congressional District but lost to Republican Andy Barr last November. Young served on the Energy & Environment Cabinet in Frankfort for 15 years. The candidate tweeted his intentions to challenge Governor Beshear last November calling him a “not-yet-indicted felon.” On Young’s campaign website www.young4ky.com, he states that Beshear “is probably the worst governor Kentucky has had in the last 100 years.”
JPI will continue the Governor Series for the next month until the primary election. Past candidate interviews for the series include Bob Devore, Mike Harmon, Ryan Quarles, Daniel Cameron, and Kelly Craft. JPI had to reschedule the interview with Alan Keck. JPI has corresponded with Jacob Clark, David Cooper, Robbie Smith, and Eric Deters to confirm interview times.