Jim Schultz, the Republican candidate for attorney general in Minnesota, is now tied with Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison (D), according to a MinnPost poll released Monday.
MinnPost found that Schultz and Ellison are tied at 47 percent support among Minnesota voters. However, the two candidates are now vying for support from the five percent of undecided voters.
Although the undecided voters lean Democrat and plan to vote blue in other statewide races, Embold pollster Ben Greenfield warned that the undecided demographic could be a bad sign for Ellison as the incumbent attorney general.
I do think it’s good news for Ellison that the people who remain undecided are leaning pretty significantly towards Democrats in the other elections. But the downside of that is he’s an incumbent, he’s a well-known figure in the state, so if he hasn’t won them over already it might be difficult to win some of them over.
A plurality of voters, 45 percent, have an unfavorable view of Ellison, the former congressman who won his attorney general election in 2018 by only four points.
Another sign that could not bode well for Ellison is that undecided voters more often listed violent crime as a priority than Ellison voters, MinnPost reported.
The poll comes as Minnesotans and Americans as a whole are increasingly worried about rising crime rates. A September poll found that reducing crime was the top priority for 41.5 percent of Minnesota voters. Nationwide, a Politico poll released this month found that 77 percent of Americans think violent crime is a significant problem within the country.
These numbers could be a good sign for Schultz, who said his top priority was “crime, crime, and crime,” during Friday’s debate with Ellison. Meanwhile, Ellison opened the debate by pleading to voters who are more concerned with protecting abortion rights.
MinnPost’s poll has a margin of error of ±2.6 percent. The outlet surveyed 1,585 Minnesota voters between October 10 and October 14.