HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — News 19, working with The Hill and Emerson College, has conducted a poll of 1,000 likely voters for Alabama’s statewide primary next Tuesday.
The GOP side of the governor’s race has dominated the airwaves for months now. News 19’s poll showed Gov. Kay Ivey with a strong lead in her bid for reelection. But, several Democrats are also seeking the seat.
The poll found 15 percent of Republican voters are undecided on their vote for governor. It’s very different on the Democratic side.
The poll found a whopping 49 percent of likely Democratic voters, by far the largest share, are undecided on who they will support for governor.
The poll found Yolanda Flowers, a retired rehabilitation counselor and former Birmingham teacher, with a substantial lead at 29 percent.
Chad Chig Martin, a business owner and musician is second at 7 percent.
A candidate would need to get 50 percent, plus one vote, to win the primary without a runoff.
An issue also emerged in the race Thursday. The Alabama Secretary of State’s office told News 19 that Flowers, the front-runner in the poll, hasn’t complied with campaign finance reporting requirements and will face fines.
Alabama’s campaign financing reporting database shows Flowers hasn’t filed any financial disclosures this year. The Flowers campaign responded to a request for comment following our reporting, late Thursday night.
“For months my campaign manager has been doing her best to log the information,” Flowers said. “Even when I gave her two individuals’ names to contact who I knew would help her resolve the problem she was having, she still reported having problems.”
Flowers went on to tell News 19 that she takes full responsibility for not following up on the matter and that she’s actively working to be in compliance.
The Secretary of State’s office said she informed them she would update her records
News 19 political analyst David Person has hopes for the crowded field.
“There are quite a few people there, of varying degrees of experience, political experience and expertise,” Person told News 19. “But I would like to believe there is at least one, if not maybe two, who can emerge as strong candidates in the general election. Again, provided they can execute their strategy. And, of course, we understand another key factor here, that all democrats are facing right now — it’s the challenge of fundraising in a red state
Martin, who the poll found in second place told News 19 the poll shows his campaign is gaining momentum and doesn’t reflect the support he also has from independents.
“I respect the poll that was recently conducted by Emerson College,” he said. “The last poll had me ranked in the fifth spot out of sixth candidates. This new polling has me ranked second which means that momentum has shifted and our campaign is resonating with Alabama voters. I do not feel that this poll is truly indicative of my standings as I have heavy Independent voter support based on my last attempt for office as a ‘write-in’ Independent candidate. We feel comfortable that we can win the election or possibly be part of a run-off. Either way I feel comfortable moving forward in my quest to become Alabama’s next Democratic candidate for Governor.”