2010 Maryland Governor's Race Poll

This Washington Post poll was conducted by telephone May 3-6, 2010, among a random sample of 1,030 adult residents of Maryland, including 851 registered voters. Interviews were conducted on both conventional and cellular phones, and in English and Spanish. The results from the full survey have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points; it is four points for the registered voter sample. Sampling, data collection and tabulation by Abt SRBI, Inc of New York, NY.

Jump to: approval ratings | economy | gay marriage | death penalty | taxes

Key

*--less than 0.5 percent
RV--Registered voters
LV--Likely voters (who say they are "absolutely certain" to vote)
All--All responses

1. Are you registered to vote at your present address, or not?

            Yes     No     No opinion
5/6/10       80     20          *

Are you registered as (a Democrat), (a Republican), an independent or something else?

              Democrat   Republican   Independent   Something else   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      56          27           13               3              1
10/20/08 RV      57          29           14               *              *
10/22/07 RV      56          25           14               4              1
10/26/06 RV      56          30           11               3              1 
6/25/06  RV      51          29           14               4              1

2. I'd like you to rate the chances that you will vote in the upcoming election for governor and U.S. Senator this November: Are you absolutely certain to vote, will you probably vote, are the chances 50-50, or less than that? A significant number of resondents said they didn't think they would vote, although that wasn't offered as an option.)

                       5/6/10 RV   10/26/06 RV
      Certain to vote     67           72
   Probably will vote     19           13
        Chances 50/50     11            7
      Less than 50/50      2            4
Don't think I'll vote      1            1
          No opinioln      *            1

3. Would you say you are following this year's governor's race in the state of Maryland very closely, fairly closely, not too closely, or not closely at all?>

               -------Closely-------     --------Not closely-------    No opinion
               NET    Very    Fairly     NET   Not too   Not at all     
5/6/10    RV   61      26       35       38       23         15             1 
10/26/06  LV   91      49       42        9        8          2             * 
10/24/02  LV   89      45       44       10        8          2             *

4. If the candidates for Maryland governor in 2010 are: (Martin O'Malley, the Democrat) and (Bob Ehrlich, the Republican); if the election were held today, for whom would you vote? (IF NOT O'MALLEY OR EHRLICH) Which one would you lean toward right now? (While not offered as choices, some respondents said they wouldn't vote for either or gave the name of another candidate)

                                           
Net Leaned Vote:  O'Malley   Ehrlich   Other   Neither   Would not vote   No opinion
5/6/10   RV          49        41        *        3             1              6
5/6/10   LV          47        47        *        2            N/A             4
10/20/08 RV          57        36        *        1             1              5
'06 Election Result  53        46        1       N/A           N/A            N/A
10/26/06 LV          55        45        0        1            N/A             *
6/25/06  LV          55        39        *        1            N/A             4
6/25/06  RV          51        40        *        3            N/A             5

5. (IF RESPONDENT NAMED CANDIDATE) Will you definitely vote for (CANDIDATE), or is there a chance you could change your mind and vote for someone else? (IF CHANCE CHANGE MIND) Is there a good chance you'll change your mind, or would you say it's pretty unlikely?

5/6/10 Summary Table - Registered voters, leaned O'Malley/Ehrlich Supporters

                                             Chance voter might change mind   
              Definitely will vote for them   NET   Good chance   Unlikely   No opinion
a. O'Malley                55                  41       17           24           4
b. Ehrlich                 59                  36       18           18           5

Martin O'Malley polling trend:

                                            Chance voter might change mind   
              Definitely will vote for him   NET   Good chance   Unlikely   No opinion
5/6/10   RV                55                 41       17           24           4
5/6/10   LV                63                 33       15           18           5
10/26/06 LV                85                 15        5           10           *

Martin O'Malley polling trend:

                                            Chance voter might change mind   
              Definitely will vote for him   NET   Good chance   Unlikely   No opinion
5/6/10   RV                59                 36       18           18           5
5/6/10   LV                67                 29       13           16           4
10/26/06 LV                85                 15        5           10           *

6. Are you satisfied with the choice of (O'Malley) or (Ehrlich), or do you wish you had more choices?

                         5/6/10 RV
Satisfied with choices      49
Wish I had more choices     45
No opinion                   6

7. Please tell me how important each of the following issues are in deciding how you'll vote for governor this year. Is the issue of (READ ITEM) extremely important in determining your vote; very important; fairly important, or not too important?

(Registered voters' responses)  ----- Important ------   --- Not important ----   
                                NET   Extremely   Very   NET   Fairly   Not too   No opinion
                        Taxes    76      36        40     24     17        7           1
             Public education    78      39        39     21     14        7           * 
          The state's economy    85      41        45     14     12        2           1
                        Crime    77      35        42     22     16        6           1
              The environment    65      29        37     34     23       11           *
     The state budget deficit    76      37        39     22     18        4           2

Polling trends:

Taxes

              ----- Important ------   --- Not important ----   
              NET   Extremely   Very   NET   Fairly   Not too   No opinion
5/6/10   RV    76      36        40     24     17        7           1
5/6/10   LV    78      38        39     22     16        7           *
10/24/02 LV    68      23        45     32     25        7           *

Public education

              ----- Important ------   --- Not important ----   
              NET   Extremely   Very   NET   Fairly   Not too   No opinion
5/6/10   RV    78      39        39     21     14        7           *
5/6/10   LV    77      40        37     23     14        8           *
10/24/02 LV    81      33        48     18     14        5           1

The state's economy

              ----- Important ------   --- Not important ----   
              NET   Extremely   Very   NET   Fairly   Not too   No opinion
5/6/10   RV    85      41        45     14     12        2           1
5/6/10   LV    86      43        43     14     12        2           1
10/24/02 LV    80      24        55     19     17        2           1

Crime

              ----- Important ------   --- Not important ----   
              NET   Extremely   Very   NET   Fairly   Not too   No opinion
5/6/10   RV    77      35        42     22     16        6           1
5/6/10   LV    75      33        43     24     17        7           1
10/24/02 LV    82      34        47     18     15        3           *

The environment

              ----- Important ------   --- Not important ----   
              NET   Extremely   Very   NET   Fairly   Not too   No opinion
5/6/10   RV    65      29        37     34     23       11           *
5/6/10   LV    64      26        37     36     25       11           *
10/24/02 LV    62      20        42     37     30        6           1

The state budget deficit

              ----- Important ------   --- Not important ----   
              NET   Extremely   Very   NET   Fairly   Not too   No opinion
5/6/10   RV    76      37        39     22     18        4           2
5/6/10   LV    79      41        38     20     16        4           1
10/24/02 LV    70      24        47     29     24        4           1

8. Please tell me whether each of the following statements applies more to (O'Malley) or more to (Ehrlich). (Though not provided as options, some respondents said "both" or "neither.")

(Registered voters' responses)                  O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
                  He is honest and trustworthy      33       29       12      12          15
He understands the problems of people like you      41       31        5      10          13
                         He is a strong leader      35       37       10       6          12
        He has a vision for the state's future      38       31       11       6          15

Polling trends:

He is honest and trustworthy

              O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      33       29       12      12          15
5/6/10   LV      31       36       12      11          10
10/26/06 LV      42       41        5       8           4

He understands the problems of people like you

              O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      41       31        5      10          13
5/6/10   LV      39       39        4      10           9
10/26/06 LV      52       38        2       5           3

He is a strong leader

              O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      35       37       10       6          12
5/6/10   LV      34       43       10       6           8
10/26/06 LV      44       45        6       3           3

He has a vision for the state's future

              O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      38       31       11       6          15
5/6/10   LV      36       38       11       5          10
10/26/06 LV      46       42        6       3           3

9. And which candidate, (O'Malley) or (Ehrlich), do you trust to do a better job on each of these issues?

(Registered voters' responses)                  O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
Working effectively with the state legislature      49        27       5      5          15
                                         Crime      40        34       5      6          16
                                         Taxes      36        44       3      5          12
                              Public education      49        29       6      3          13
                             The state economy      39        43       2      4          11
                      The state budget deficit      37        42       4      5          12
	                       The environment      49        25       5      5          17

Polling trends where available:

Working effectively with the state legislature

              O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      49       27        5       5          15
5/6/10   LV      50       30        5       4          10
10/26/06 LV      61       33        2       2           3

Crime

              O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      40       34        5       6          16
5/6/10   LV      39       41        5       5          11
10/26/06 LV      46       45        2       4           4 

Taxes

              O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      36       44        3       5          12
5/6/10   LV      34       50        3       5           7
10/26/06 LV      47       45        1       3           4

Public education

              O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      49       29        6       3          13
5/6/10   LV      47       36        5       3           9
10/26/06 LV      50       43        2       3           2

The state economy

              O'Malley  Ehrlich   Both   Neither   No opinion
5/6/10   RV      39       43        2       4          11
5/6/10   LV      38       51        2       4           5
10/26/06 LV      46       48        1       2           3

10. Do you think [NAME]'s views on most issues are (too liberal) for you, (too conservative), or just about right?

(Registered voters' responses)                 
              Too liberal   Too conservative   About right   No opinion
a. O'Malley       34                8              45            13
b. Ehrlich         6               31              46            17

Ehrlich polling trend (no O'Malley trend available):

               Too liberal   Too conservative   About right   No opinion
5/6/10   RV         6              31              46             17
1/7/04   RV         8              29              59              4
10/24/02 LV        10              33              49              7

11. Do you think things in the state of Maryland are generally going in the right direction, or do you feel things have gotten pretty seriously off on the wrong track?

               Right direction   Wrong track   No opinion
5/6/10   RV          41              52             7
5/6/10               39              49            12
10/20/08 RV          31              63             6
10/22/07 RV          45              48             7
10/26/06 LV          57              39             5
6/25/06  RV          44              50             6
1/7/04   RV          56              36             8
10/24/02 LV          42              51             7
10/22/98 RV          54              36            10
6/17/98  LV          56              32            11
6/17/98  All         53              34            13
12/19/93 All         33              56            11

12. Generally speaking, how would you rate the overall economy of Maryland: excellent, good, not-so-good or poor?

             ----Excellent/Good----    -----Not-so-good/Poor-----      
             NET   Excellent   Good    NET    Not-so-good    Poor   No opinion
5/6/10   RV   44       2        41      55        40          15         1 
5/6/10        41       3        38      57        42          15         2 
10/22/07 RV   62       6        56      36        27          10         1 
10/22/07      64       6        58      35        24          10         1 
1/7/04   RV   61       3        58      38        31           7         1 
1/7/04        63       4        59      36        28           8         1 
10/24/02 LV   57       3        54      42        33           9         1
10/22/98 LV   76       8        67      23        18           4         2
6/17/98  LV   78      10        68      20        16           4         2
6/17/98       75       8        67      23        17           6         3

13. Regardless of how you may vote) Do you approve or disapprove of the way Martin O'Malley is handling his job as governor? Do you approve/disapprove strongly or somewhat?

              -------- Approve --------    ------- Disapprove ------   
              NET   Strongly   Somewhat    NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
5/6/10   RV    58      19         39        34      17         17           8
5/6/10         54      17         37        34      17         17          12
10/20/08 RV    53      14         39        37      16         21          10
10/22/07 RV    51      13         38        39      17         22          11
10/22/07       53      12         40        36      18         19          11

Compare to Bob Ehrlich:

              -------- Approve --------    ------- Disapprove ------   
              NET   Strongly   Somewhat    NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
10/26/06 LV    55      30         25        42      19         23           3
6/25/06  RV    56      21         36        41      21         20           3
1/7/04   RV    64      23         41        29      17         12           8
1/7/04   All   62      21         42        28      17         11          10

Compare to Parris Glendening:

              -------- Approve --------    ------- Disapprove ------   
              NET   Strongly   Somewhat    NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
10/24/02 LV    37       9         29        58      22         37           4
10/22/98 LV    54      16         38        40      21         19           6
6/17/98  LV    55      14         41        36      19         18           9

14. Do you approve or disapprove of the way O'Malley is handling the issue of the state budget and taxes?

             Approve   Disapprove   No opinion
5/6/10   RV    46          40           14 
10/22/07 RV    39          52           10

15. How much would you say O'Malley has accomplished as governor: a lot, a fair amount, some, or not much? (2007 poll asked about accomplishments "in his first year.")

              --- A lot/Fair amount ---    --- Some/Not much ---       
              NET   A lot   Fair amount    NET   Some   Not much    No opinion
5/6/10    RV   46     8         38          48    29       20            5
10/22/07  RV   28     3         25          67    32       35            4

Compare to:

How much would you say Ehrlich has accomplished in his first term as governor: a lot, a fair amount, some, or not much? (2004 poll asked about accomplishments "in his first year.")

              --- A lot/Fair amount ---    --- Some/Not much ---       
              NET   A lot   Fair amount    NET   Some   Not much    No opinion
10/26/06 LV    51    14         37          47    28       19            1
6/25/06  RV    48     8         40          51    30       21            2
1/7/04   RV    49     6         43          47    29       18            4

16. Do you approve or disapprove of the way the Maryland state legislature is doing its job? Do you approve/disapprove strongly or somewhat?

              ---------Approve---------   --------Disapprove-------      
              NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
5/6/10   RV   48        7         41      39       21         17          14 
10/22/07 RV   46        6         40      46       21         24           9

17. Do you approve or disapprove of the way [NAME] is handling (his/her) job as U.S. Senator? Do you approve/disapprove strongly or somewhat?

Among registered voters   ---------Approve---------   --------Disapprove-------     
                          NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
Ben Cardin                 48      21         27       21      10         12          31
Barbara Mikulski           58      37         22       26       8         18          16

Ben Cardin polling trend:

              ---------Approve---------   --------Disapprove-------      
              NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
5/6/10   RV    48      21         27       21      10         12          31
10/22/07 RV    51      NA         NA       25      NA         NA          24  

18. I am going to read you a list of names. For each, please tell me if you have a favorable or unfavorable impression of that person, or perhaps you don't know enough to say.

Among registered voters    Favorable    Unfavorable    No opinion
Michael Steele                33            37             30
Anthony Brown                 20             7             73
Douglas Gansler               18             7             74
Peter Franchot                20             8             72

Michael Steele

               Favorable     Unfavorable     No opinion
5/6/10   RV       33             37              30
10/26/06 LV       56             35               9
6/25/06  RV       51             26              23
1/7/04   RV       42              9              49

Anthony Brown

               Favorable     Unfavorable     No opinion
5/6/10   RV       20              7              73
10/20/08 RV       22              6              72
10/26/06 LV       25              9              66

Douglas Gansler

               Favorable     Unfavorable     No opinion
5/6/10   RV       18              7              74
10/20/08 RV       16              8              76

Peter Franchot

               Favorable     Unfavorable     No opinion
5/6/10   RV       20              8              72
10/20/08 RV       18             11              71

19. Do you approve or disapprove of the way Barack Obama is handling his job as president? Do you approve/disapprove strongly or somewhat?

              ---------Approve---------   --------Disapprove-------      
              NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
5/6/10         62      40         21       34      10         24           5
5/6/10 RV      62      42         19       36       9         26           3

Compare to national:

           -------- Approve --------   ------- Disapprove ------     
           NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
4/25/10     54      31         23       44      11         33           3
3/26/10     53      34         20       43       8         35           3
2/8/10      51      29         22       46      12         33           3
1/15/10     53      30         24       44      13         32           2
12/13/09    50      31         18       46      13         33           4 
11/15/09    56      32         23       42      13         29           2
10/18/09    57      33         23       40      11         29           3
9/12/09     54      35         19       43      12         31           3
8/17/09     57      35         21       40      11         29           3
7/18/09     59      38         22       37       9         28           4
6/21/09     65      36         29       31      10         22           4 
4/24/09     69      42         27       26       8         18           4 
3/29/09     66      40         26       29       9         20           5
2/22/09     68      43         25       25       8         17           7

20. On another subject: overall, given what you know about them, would you say you support or oppose the changes to the health care system that have been enacted by (Congress) and (the Obama administration)? Do you feel that way strongly or somewhat?

         -------- Support --------   --------- Oppose --------      
         NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
5/6/10    54      37         18       37      9         28            8

Compare to national:

           -------- Support --------   --------- Oppose --------        
           NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Somewhat   Strongly   No opinion
3/26/10     46      32         13       50      10         40           4

21. How do you feel about [ITEM] - very worried, somewhat worried, not too worried or not worried at all?

                           ----- Worried -----   ------------- Not worried --------------   
                           NET  Very  Somewhat   NET  Not too worried  Not worried at all   No opinion
a. The direction of the 
   nation's economy over 
   the next few years       77   34      43       21        16                 6                 1
b. Your own family's
   financial situation      58   21      37       41        26                16                 1

Trends:

a. The direction of the nation's economy over the next few years

          ----- Worried -----   ------------- Not worried --------------   
          NET  Very  Somewhat   NET  Not too worried  Not worried at all   No opinion
5/6/10     77   34      43       21         16                6                 1
10/20/08   90   56      34        9          6                3                 1

b. Your own family's financial situation

          ----- Worried -----   ------------- Not worried --------------   
          NET  Very  Somewhat   NET  Not too worried  Not worried at all   No opinion
5/6/10     58   21      37       41         26               16                 1
10/20/08   65   24      41       34         23               12                 *

22. So far, do you think the federal economic stimulus program has (helped) the economy in Maryland, (hurt) the state's economy, or hasn't made much difference? Is that A GREAT DEAL or SOMEWHAT?

          -------- Helped ---------   --------- Hurt ----------    
          NET  Great deal  Somewhat   NET  Somewhat  Great deal   No difference   No opinion
5/6/10     29       6         23       11      5          7             53             6

(IF HURT/NO DIFFERENCE/DON'T KNOW) Do you think the economic stimulus program will help the state's economy, or not?

          Yes   No   No opinion
5/6/10     39   49       12

Combined results:

          --- Helped/Will help --   ------- Hurt/Won't help ------
          NET   Has helped   Will   NET   Has hurt   No difference   No opinion
5/6/10    56        29        27    35       8             27             8

23. I am going to mention four phrases and ask you which one best describes how you feel about the way the federal government works. Do you feel enthusiastic, satisfied but not enthusiastic, dissatisfied but not angry, or angry?

             -------- Positive ----------    ------- Negative -------                                    
             NET  Enthusiastic  Satisfied    NET  Dissatisfied  Angry   No opinion      
5/6/10  RV    45        5          40         53       38        15          2

Compare to national:

             -------- Positive ----------    ------- Negative -------                                    
             NET  Enthusiastic  Satisfied    NET  Dissatisfied  Angry   No opinion      
4/25/10 RV    30        5          26         69       52        18          *

24. Changing topics, would you favor or oppose a state law that would allow gay and lesbian couples to get married?

             Favor     Oppose     No opinion
5/6/10   RV    48        43            9 
5/6/10         46        44           10 
10/22/07 RV    45        50            5 
10/22/07       44        51            5 
6/25/06  RV    42        56            3
1/7/04   RV    35        58            7
1/7/04         35        58            7

25. If a gay or lesbian couple gets legally married in another state, do you think that marriage should or should not be recognized as legal in Maryland?

           Should be recognized   Should not be   No opinion
5/6/10 RV           56                 37              7
5/6/10              55                 38              7

Compare to national:

If a gay or lesbian couple gets legally married in another state, do you think that marriage should or should not be recognized as legal in your state?

         Should be recognized   Should not be   No opinion
4/24/09           53                 43              4

26. On another subject, do you favor or oppose the death penalty for people convicted of murder?

            Favor    Oppose    No opinion
5/6/10       60        32           8
10/22/07     60        35           5

27. Which punishment do you prefer for people convicted of murder: (the death penalty) or (life in prison with no chance of parole)?

           Death Penalty    Life    No opinion
5/6/10          40           49         11
10/22/07        43           52          5

28. As you may know, the state projects a large budget deficit next year. Overall, do you think the budget situation is a big problem, somewhat of a problem, not much of a problem or not a problem for the people of Maryland today? (2007 poll question used phrasing "the state projects a one point seven billion dollar budget deficit.")

              ----- Problem -----     ---- Not a problem ----        
              NET   Big   Somewhat    NET   Not much   At all   No opinion
5/6/10    RV   95    66      29        5        3         2          1
10/20/08  RV   97    76      21        2        1         1          1
10/22/07* RV   94    61      33        5        3         2          1

29. How fair do you think the Maryland state tax system is? Overall, would you say that the tax system is very fair, moderately fair, not too fair, or not fair at all?

             --------- Fair --------    -------- Not fair --------      
             NET   Very   Moderately    NET   Not too   Not at all   No opinion
5/6/10   RV   61     8        53         37      23         13            3 
10/22/07 RV   55     5        50         44      28         16            1

30. Thinking about the changes to the Maryland tax system over the past few years, would you say the taxes you and your immediate family pay have (gone up), (gone down) or are they about the same as they were a few years ago?

             Gone up   Gone down   About the same   No opinion
5/6/10  RV     62          5             30              3

Compare to:

From what you know, if this plan passes, do you think you and your immediate family would generally pay (more), (less), or about the same amount in taxes as you pay now?

             Pay more   Pay less   Pay same amount   No opinion
10/22/07 RV     45         14            38               3

31. As things stand now, regardless of who wins in November, do you think the next governor (will be able to meet the state's needs without raising taxes), or do you think he (will need to raise taxes in order to meet the state's needs)? IF NEED TO RAISE: Do you think taxes will need to go up a lot or a little?

        --- Need to raise ----         
         NET   A lot   A little   Meet needs without raising taxes   No opinion
5/6/10    53    18        35                     36                      11

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