The Alabama special Senate election has been a wild ride, to say the least. After candidate Judge Roy Moore was accused of inappropriate sexual behavior and relationships with teenagers while he was 30, the outlook for his success has been grim, but thanks to a recent poll, Moore may be gaining ground again, reports The Weekly Standard.
“‘The Republican leads in three polls taken after Thanksgiving. Both Change Researchand JMC Analytics show a five-point lead for Moore, and Emerson College has him ahead by six. The RealClearPoltics average, which showed a Jones lead days ago, now has Moore up by two points,’ reports the Weekly Standard.”
While these three polls agree on where public opinion is, they disagree on some of the key dynamics in the race.
The JMC poll and the Change Research survey both present an improvement for Moore (JMC previously had Jones up by four and Change Research had Jones up by three) but the Emerson result represents a decline for Moore (they had him up by 10 after the Washington Post story broke).
Overall though, these polls are bad signs for Jones but good for Moore.
Moore’s ability to gain back some of the voters he lost when the Washington Post article broke is a testament to his likability and his support in Alabama. Alabama is also deeply a Republican state, so any move toward even slightly more normal voting patterns represents a problem for Jones.
It’s also important to keep in mind that these polls are just a snapshot of a moment in time. There is still time for Moore to advance in the polls, and the opposite could be said as well. But only time will tell for sure, and polls can only give us a guess at the time.
But maybe most importantly, polls in this race rely on different projections about the shape of the electorate in this special election. So different pollsters will make different projections about the contours of the electorate, and we won’t know which one is right until the votes are counted in December.