Texas Tech Survey Predicts McCain to Win Texas
October 29, 2008
If the election was held today, a majority of Texans would pick Sen. John McCain for
If the presidential election was held today, a majority of Texans would pick Sen.
John McCain for president, according to a poll of voting-age Texans by undergraduate
students at the Earl Survey Research Lab at Texas Tech University.
In step with Texas' strong Republican leanings, 58 percent of those polled said they'd
vote for McCain, while 29 percent said they'd vote for Sen. Barack Obama, showing
that Texans haven not changed their minds since the students polled voters in April.
Three percent said they were voting for another candidate while seven percent still
had to decide.
Students queried more than 800 registered Texas voters in a statewide telephone survey
from Oct. 6-26. In the survey, 41 percent of voters classified themselves as Republicans,
22 percent said they were Democrats and 25 percent said they were independents.
"Texas remains a conservative state, and the overwhelming majority of citizens consider
themselves Republicans," said Dennis Patterson, associate professor of political science
who instructs the class that did the survey. "For Democrats to stand a chance of carrying
Texas, they either must convince Texans to switch their party loyalties or capture
all independent and Democratic voters. There is absolutely no room for error on the
part of the Democrats."
About 53 percent of Texans believed that McCain's take on current issues was stronger
Texans' opinion of President George W. Bush has dwindled, however, as only 36 percent
approve of the administration. Nationwide, the president's job approval rating sits
at about 25 percent. Also, only 34 percent had confidence that Treasury Secretary
Henry Paulson's $700 billion bailout would work.
On other issues, Texans:
- said job opportunities in the state are good.
- seem to be reluctant to support an immediate troop withdrawal in Iraq, with 61 percent
believing troops should stay.
- Are divided as to whether sex education and birth control or morality and abstinence
should be emphasized to reduce pregnancies among teenagers, though the poll found
a slight majority supported sex education and birth control more.
- A slight majority oppose a federal tax increase to fund programs to prevent illegal
The poll has a margin of error of +/- 3.4 percent, meaning that 95 percent of the
time, results would fall within +/- 3.4 points from what would be obtained by interviewing
all adult Texans.
The survey is conducted each semester by political science majors in the department's
undergraduate research methods course and is administered at the lab by the Department
of Political Science. For more information, visit www.ttu.edu/~esrl.
CONTACT: Dennis Patterson, associate professor, Department of Political
Science, Texas Tech University,
(806) 742-4050, or firstname.lastname@example.org.