With just a few days to go until election day, the race to be the next governor of Wisconsin is coming down to the wire. A new PPP survey found that Gov. Scott Walker and Democrat Mary Burke are statistically tied.
The PPP survey revealed that the vast majority of Wisconsin voters have made up their minds. Ninety-five percent of respondents said that they knew who they are voting for. Of those who know who they are voting for Walker leads Burke 48%-47%, but his lead is well within the poll’s margin of error. Four percent of respondents said that they remained truly undecided. It is this four percent who may decide who the next governor will be.
Scott Walker has a net (+2) approval rating of 49%-47%, while Mary Burke has a net (-3) approval rating of 45%-48%. Burke leads Walker by nine points among women (52%-43%), but Walker leads Burke by ten points with men (52%-42%). Walker leads with white voters (51%-45%), and Burke leads with African-Americans (84%-7%). Mary Burke leads Gov. Walker with younger voters age 18-29 (50%-33%). Walker strongest base of support is voters over age 65%. He leads Burke with older voters by four points (51%-47%).
The Wisconsin governor election is a nail-bitingly close contest. The breakdown of the electorate mirrors the partisanization and polarization that exists nationally. A deeper look inside the numbers reveals that the election in Wisconsin is about more than who gets their voters out. For Burke to win, she needs women and younger voters specifically to get out and vote. Walker’s leads with voters outside of white men are very small. Even if Walker’s base showed up, the governor would only have a two-point lead.
Wisconsin is literally a case where if Democrats show up even a little bit more than they did in 2010, Burke has a good chance of winning. Burke doesn’t need an overwhelming increase in Democratic turnout. An extra point or two would probably be enough for her to defeat Scott Walker.
Instead of a Republican wave 2014 is the year of the close election, and there may be fewer closer than the race for governor in Wisconsin.