2014 Kansas Speaks Survey finds tight races for governor, secretary of state

One finding in the upcoming Kansas Speaks Survey 2014, conducted by Fort Hays State University's Docking Institute of Public Affairs, is that the two highest profile races in the election are tight tight tight.

Of likely voters -- people who voted in the 2012 election -- 36.5 percent said that if the election were held today, they would vote for the Brownback/Collier ticket, 38.8 percent said they would vote for the Davis/Docking ticket, and 8.5 percent said they would vote for the Umbehr/Umbehr ticket. Sixteen percent were undecided.

When asked who their choice would be for secretary of state if the election were held today, 45.3 percent said they would vote for Republican Kris Kobach while 40.4 percent said they would vote for Democrat Jean Schodorf. Fourteen percent are undecided.

Between Sept. 10 and Sept. 27, 952 random adult residents of Kansas were contacted by telephone and asked a series of questions to measure their opinions of elected officials and preferences for public policies. The response rate was 53.6 percent.

Of these 952 respondents, 685 said that they voted in the 2012 election. The margin of error for these estimates is plus or minus 3.8 percent, which means there are no clear leaders in the governor's race, but Kobach holds a statistically significant lead over Schodorf.

"However, with 16 percent undecided in the governor's race and 14 percent undecided in the race for secretary of state, predicting a likely winner in either race is risky," said Dr. Gary Brinker, director of the Docking Institute.

Full results of this year's Kansas Speaks will be released Sunday, Oct. 19, in tabloid inserts in the Hays Daily News, the Wichita Eagle and the Topeka Capital-Journal. Brinker and Dr. Chapman Rackaway, professor of political science at FHSU, are also scheduled to appear that day at 10 a.m. on This Week in Kansas on KAKE TV, Wichita.

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