Results from an exclusive News 9 poll show that the race for governor is extremely tight.
The general election is eight weeks away and will determine, not only who will serve as Oklahoma's next governor, but who will fill all the statewide elective offices. Five state questions are also on the ballot.
The poll, conducted last week by SoonerPoll.com, surveyed 400 likely voters on all the statewide races and state questions.
Results show, in most of the statewide races, including lieutenant governor, state superintendent of schools, and attorney general, the Republican candidate has at least an 18-point lead.
That is not the case in the race for governor.
The race features Republican Kevin Stitt, the businessman and political newcomer, versus Democrat Drew Edmondson, the long-time Attorney General, who has been out of politics for the last eight years. They are the heavyweights in a red state match-up that Real Clear Politics now colors pink ('lean GOP'), and that may be generous.
News Nine's exclusive poll shows Stitt with 46.6 percent and Edmondson with 44.2 percent. Given the poll's margin of error, that's a statistical dead heat. Libertarian Chris Powell has just over three percent, and six percent of those surveyed say they haven't yet made up their minds.
SoonerPoll CEO Bill Shapard says, considering few even knew who Stitt was a year ago, there's no question that being in the runoff with Mick Cornett definitely helped him.
"That extra opportunity to run ads and win that campaign has helped him raise his name ID among general election voters," said Shapard, "but Drew Edmondson is right in the thick of things, as this breaks down along party lines."
Shapard says the poll data shows that Edmondson is getting more crossover votes than Stitt is right now, which is atypical for Democrats. Edmondson is also far more appealing to self-described moderates, according to the poll results.
Still, Shapard says, in order for Edmondson to win in November, Democrats will have to turn out at the polls in much higher numbers than they have in recent elections.
See the full SoonerPoll results in the document below: