Mississippi GOP may be headed for runoff in governor's race, poll shows

A new survey shows Mississippi Republicans so torn between their leading candidates for governor that they might need a runoff between the top two candidates. The Mason-Dixon Polling and Strategy survey released Tuesday shows Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves (R) leading the Republican field with 41 percent of the vote, followed by former state Supreme Court Justice Bill Waller (R) at 31 percent. Another 13 percent back state Rep. Robert Foster (R), and 15 percent remain undecided. Reeves, the best-funded and most well-known candidate in the field, needs to break 50 percent of the vote in the Aug. 6 primary in order to avoid a runoff that would be held Aug. 27.ADVERTISEMENT Reeves leads by the most substantial margins along the conservative Gulf Coast, where he beats Waller by a two-to-one margin, and in Southern Mississippi. But Waller ties Reeves in the Mississippi Delta, and runs nearly even with him in the populous Jackson metro area, Reeves’s home region.  Reeves leads by a nearly two-to-one margin among men and those under 50, while Waller runs close to Reeves among women and those over 50, according to the poll. “We don’t really pay attention to these public polls, and this one in particular has a history of being wrong. They predicted Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWhite House accuses Biden of pushing ‘conspiracy theories’ with Trump election claim Biden courts younger voters — who have been a weakness Trayvon Martin’s mother Sybrina Fulton qualifies to run for county commissioner in Florida MORE could win Mississippi. We’ll see the real numbers next week,” said Parker Briden, Reeves’s campaign spokesman. Reeves, who enjoys backing from most of Mississippi’s entrenched Republican political class and has a war chest far larger than his opponents, began the race as the far-and-away front-runner. A June poll, conducted for the political blog Y’All Politics before the race’s first debate, showed Reeves leading the GOP field with 50 percent, compared with 19 percent for Waller and 9 percent for Foster. But Waller has won support from a network of Republicans who think Reeves has taken the nomination for granted. At the same time, Foster’s standing in recent polls rose after he refused to allow a political reporter on his campaign bus because she was a woman. Foster may be pulling more voters from Reeves than from Waller. The Mason-Dixon survey, conducted July 24-27, polled 500 likely Republican primary voters for a margin of error of 4.5 percentage points. The winner of the Republican primary faces Attorney General Jim Hood (D) in November. Hood, one of the last remaining statewide elected Democrats in a Deep South state, faces several unknown candidates in his primary. Click Here: New Zealand rugby store