ALABAMA (WHNT) – News 19, the Hill, and Emerson College conducted a poll highlighting voter opinions heading into the 2022 Alabama primary election. When asked who they plan to vote for in the U.S. Senate and gubernatorial races, the majority of respondents reported they remain undecided.
Three candidates are currently on the Democratic ballot for U.S. Senate: pastor and former educator Will Boyd, U.S. Army veteran Lanny Jackson, and former Brighton Mayor Brandaun Dean.
Boyd is polling the highest with 11% of respondents saying he would be their pick. He is followed by Jackson with 7% and Dean with 5%.
Victor Williams was removed from the ballot by the Alabama Democratic Party after he announced his support for former President Trump earlier this month.
The largest group of voters at 67% remain undecided.
Moving forward in the race, the candidates face the challenge of getting their names and platforms in front of voters.
“You’ve got to move beyond just TV commercials and radio commercials,” said News 19 political analyst David Person. “There has got to be a personal connection that is made with as many of the voters as possible.”
In the Democratic gubernatorial race, six candidates have qualified for the primary.
Yolanda Flowers leads with 11% of those polled saying they plan to vote for her. She is followed by businessman Doug Smith with 8%, current district 23 Alabama Senator Malika Sander-Fortier with 8%, Arthur Kennedy with 7%, businessman Chad ‘Chig’ Martin with 4%, and Patricia Jamieson with 3%.
Compared to the Republican primary, less campaign funds have been raised and spent in the Democratic race for governor. However, Person said campaigns without big financial supporters still have the potential to win over voters.
“You can raise money in small increments from lots of people if you do the work, if you do the fundamental work that politicians have to do to cultivate support,” Person said.
According to state campaign filings, the Jamieson campaign has raised the most funds with contributions totaling over $18,000.
Alabama is an open primary state meaning voters can choose which primary they want to vote in regardless of their party affiliation. Of those polled, only 34% said they planned to vote in the Democratic primary election. 66% said they would vote in the Republican primary.