KSTP/SurveyUSA poll: 3 statewide races all toss-ups with a month to go

[anvplayer video=”5140033″ station=”998122″]

All three Minnesota statewide races below the governor’s race are considered toss-ups, according to our exclusive new KSTP/SurveyUSA poll.

The three Democratic incumbents in the races for attorney general, secretary of state and auditor all remain in the lead, but well within the “credibility interval,” similar to a margin of error, in each of the races.

“The Republican chances of winning at least one statewide race are as high as they’ve been since 2006 when they last won a statewide race,” Carleton College political analyst Steven Schier told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS after analyzing the results.

RELATED: KSTP/SurveyUSA poll: DFL incumbents lead 3 key races, but GOP challengers very close

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison leads Republican challenger Jim Schultz 45% to 43% with 13% undecided. A month ago Ellison led 46% to 40% with 14% undecided.

There is a big gender gap in the race with Ellison up by 17 points among women and Schultz up 13 among men. Ellison’s lead among women might be due in part to the abortion issue.

“Abortion will be a factor with some voters, but I also think in the attorney general’s race the whole question of law and order is going to be a big issue as well given the increase in crime in the metro area,” Schier says.

On the crime and public safety issue, Ellison might be hurt by his support for a charter amendment in Minneapolis to disband and replace the Minneapolis Police Department with a public safety department. Minneapolis voters defeated that measure. Ellison says he’s never supported “defunding police,” but his opponent says supporting that amendment was the same as defunding police.

“To the extent that you can attach defund the police to Keith Ellison, he’s in political trouble,” Schier says.

RELATED: KSTP/SurveyUSA poll: Walz lead over Jensen shrinks

It’s possible Secretary of State Steve Simon is also in political trouble. He leads Republican Kim Crockett by two points, 42% to 40% with 18% undecided.

Crockett has questioned the legitimacy of the 2020 elections, particularly the presidential race. In a recent debate, she also appeared to dodge a question about whether she will accept the results of the 2022 elections.

Schier says her skepticism about voting procedures appears to be working for her despite little evidence of widespread fraud or inaccuracies.

“A lot of people are suspicious of election procedures in Minnesota, and she’s capitalizing on that, and it seems to be working for her and keeping her very competitive,” Schier says.

Simon leads by 8 points in the Twin Cities, but Crockett leads everywhere else, including by 5 in southern Minnesota, 12 in the western part of the state and by 4 in the northeast.

The only one of these three Democratic incumbents who has a bigger lead than a month ago is State Auditor Julie Blaha, who expanded her lead from 1 point to 3 points over Republican challenger Ryan Wilson. However, that still leaves the race in toss-up territory with 18% undecided, the most of any of the statewide races.

KSTP’s full Election 2022 coverage

SurveyUSA interviewed a representative cross-section of 825 Minnesota adults online from Sept. 30 through Oct. 3 using a sample provided by Lucid Holdings, LLC of New Orleans.

Of the adults, 707 were registered to vote. Of the registered voters, 604 were identified by SurveyUSA as being likely to vote in the November 2022 general election and were asked the questions which follow. The pool of adult survey respondents was weighted to U.S. Census targets for gender, age, race, education and home ownership.

The survey in the governor’s race included 37% who identified themselves as Republicans, 36% as Democrats and 24% as independents.

View the full survey results below: