KHOU and KUHF sponsored a poll conducted by Bob Stein and Stephanie Post at Rice University which finds Mayor Annise Parker leading the pack, but as the numbers currently stand, would lead to a run-off. Here are the results:
There are nine candidates for Houston Mayor. Voters were read their names and asked if the election were held today, whom would they vote for?
Voters were asked to rate the job performance of Houston City Mayor Annise Parker.
When no candidate receives a majority of votes cast in an election, a run-off election is held between the two candidates with the largest number of votes. The City of Houston currently conducts its run-off elections for municipal offices such as mayor, controller and city council on Saturday. The city is considering conducting run-off elections on Tuesday. Voters were asked if they would support this change?
Then voters were asked, if they would still feel this way if they knew the City of Houston would save money holding run-off elections on Tuesday?
That’s the first I hear about a Tuesday run-off possibility. I’ve never been a fan and I would suggest we keep Saturday.
Back to the poll, though, there’s so many ways to interpret that half of the voters polled are undecided and both sides can make a lot of hay out of it. Although Texpatriate seems to think that the 48% are undecided Republicans who can’t seem to choose between Hall and Dick, I tend to think that voters haven’t really gotten a dose of the hard-core stuff, yet, especially on TV. Sure, there was some initial sparring through the airwaves (and lately in the Chron), but once we get a daily dose of ads and more news coverage, voters will begin to give the election more attention.
The poll does drive home the fact that Ben Hall has yet to make a real impact with voters. When 57% of those polled think the Mayor is doing a good/excellent job, and another 31% find her fair (which means tolerable, I guess?), then Hall is being given the message that he needs to do more than just complain about the Mayor on a daily basis.
I’m hoping there will be more regarding City Council races. Laurie Johnson at KUHF reports that run-offs are expected in open seats, and that incumbents, like District A’s Helena Brown and At-Large 2′s Andrew Burks, could end up losing. What is this based on? Well, it doesn’t say, other than comments from local professors. So, yeah, I’m hoping there’s polling that’s about to be reported to back up these assertions.
Here’s the KUHF story.