In the first poll released since two candidates emerged from Louisiana’s jungle primary for governor, state House Minority Leader John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, holds a serious lead over Republican Sen. David Vitter.
The survey , made public by the Democratic Governors Association and conducted by Anzalone Liszt Grove Research — an Alabama-based firm that has done polling for both of Barack Obama’s presidential campaigns and now Hillary Rodham Clinton’s — found Edwards with a 12-point lead, 52 percent to 40 percent, with less than four weeks until the Nov. 21 runoff. Vitter inched his way into the runoff on Oct. 24 over two other Republicans with 23 percent of the vote. He finished four points ahead of Scott Angelle, a member of the state’s Public Service Commission, and eight points ahead of Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne. Edwards received about 40 percent of the vote.
Vitter entered the race as the frontrunner, but, as the target of his three top primary rivals, limped from the primary with his reputation seriously damaged from negative television ads and attacks from other candidates about his 2007 prostitution scandal.
When voters were surveyed this week, the pollster found Vitter’s unfavorable rating at 52 percent, while 40 percent viewed him favorably. In February, the numbers were nearly opposite — 53 percent favorable and 36 percent unfavorable, the pollster said .
The polling firm interviewed 700 voters by phone from Oct. 26-28, producing a poll with a 3.7 percent margin of error.
Prior to the primary, other polling found Vitter trailing all three of his rivals in head-to-head match-ups in the runoff to replace the state’s outgoing Republican governor, Bobby Jindal.