Scott Heidepriem and Ben Arndt are gaining ground and Dennis Daugaard and Matt Michels are losing it.
That’s what a new poll commissioned by the Heidepriem/Arndt campaign indicates, matching what Arndt told us two weeks ago.
The Democratic team has trailed by nearly 30 point all summer, according to the numbers we have seen from Rasmussen Reports, an admittedly conservative-leaning pollster. Despite that, the Democrats have always said they were right on track.
These new figures come on the heels of a late TV advertising burst by Heidepriem and Arndt, who are saying the state’s budget is a mess and they can solve the problem.
According to the Democrats, “A new scientific poll in the Governorâ€™s race released today shows that Democrat Scott Heidepriem has made major gains on Lieutenant Governor Dennis Daugaard pulling Daugaard under 50 percent of the prospective vote while pulling to within 45 â€“ 32 percent of Daugaard with 22 percent of survey respondents remaining undecided.”
What jumps out is the relatively small increase in support for Heidepriem, who has been in the low 30s and high 20a in all polls, but the sharp decline by Daugaard, who lost more than 10 points. If you believe the poll.
The poll was done by RMA Research, a division of Robinson & Muenster Associates, Inc., from Oct. 11-14 and reportedly has a margin of error of 4.9 percent. Robinson & Muenster was founded by prominent liberals and Democrats, including Ted Muenster, who served as chief of staff for Dick Kneip, the last Democrat to serve as South Dakota’s governor.
Kneip won in 1970, 1972 and 1974. Since that time, GOP gubernatorial candidates have compiled the longest winning streak in the nation.