TEXAS, USA — Governor Greg Abbott has doubled his lead over his Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke, according to a new poll from the Texas Politics Project at the University of Texas at Austin.
Abbott’s 11-point lead comes just days before early voting begins and it’s not the news the O’Rourke campaign anticipated this close to the election.
For Abbott, while he maintains his lead in polling, he isn’t taking anything for granted.
It’s an expanding lead for the twice-elected Republican.
“In poll after poll, after poll Governor Abbott and Republicans are consistently leading,” said Republican Strategist Vlad Davidiuk.
Davidiuk said it spells bad news for Democrats, who have high hopes for November’s election.
“Beto O’Rourke, I think, has the right concerns to be worried,” he said.
In the online poll, Abbott is leading Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke in the gubernatorial race, 54%-43%, among the 883 polled Texans likely to vote in the 2022 election.
“Not only are republicans coming home, and not only are Democrats deflating,” Davidiuk said. “But Independents and leaners are coming over to the Republican side of the ballot.”
O’Rourke’s campaign responded to the poll with the following statement:
“Today’s poll once again confirms that Texans believe the state is going in the wrong direction under Greg Abbott’s failed leadership and extreme agenda."
"A majority of Texans are concerned about the current direction of the state as Abbott has banned abortion with no exceptions for rape or incest, and as he has failed to address rising crime, rising property taxes, and rising gun violence that is now the leading cause of death for kids and teens across Texas, ” said O'Rourke's Campaign Communications Director Chris Evans.
The UT poll also shows other statewide Republican candidates leading Democrats.
A previous UT survey from earlier this year showed only a 5-point lead for Abbott over O’Rourke
Governor Abbott’s campaign did not respond to a request for comment.
Texas Democratic Party chairman Gilberto Hinojosa released the following statement about the poll:
“The results of one outlier poll do not change the reality on the ground here in Texas: that there’s a groundswell of enthusiastic support for our Democratic slate — and intense opposition to the failed, extreme policies of Greg Abbott and his corrupt Republican counterparts.
“From failing to keep Texas kids safe, to ignoring our broken electric grid, to instituting an extreme abortion ban with no exceptions for rape or incest — Texans are sick and tired of this state’s worthless leadership. We’re going to continue organizing and mobilizing communities from Lubbock to McAllen, ignoring the polls, and working like hell to win on November 8.”