A new poll from InsiderAdvantage/Fox 10 News has Masters and Kelly tied. At the same time, the final poll of the cycle from Emerson College showed Masters with a slight lead; another poll from Big Data Poll found another lead for Masters. The polls come amid growing optimism for a Republican wave with just four days to go before the 2022 midterms.
The InsiderAdvantage/Fox 10 poll of 550 likely voters, taken on November 2, showed Masters and Kelly tied at 48% apiece. Libertarian candidate Marc Victor, who dropped out of the race and endorsed Masters on November 1, still took 2% of the vote. Another 2% were undecided. InsiderAdvantage pollster Matt Towery told the outlet that Masters garnered support from more voters who identified themselves as independent. But the poll also found Kelly siphoning some 15% of self-identifying Republicans off from Masters.
Meanwhile, an Emerson College poll of 1,000 “very likely voters,” conducted from October 30 – November 1, showed Masters with a slight lead over incumbent Democrat Mark Kelly, 47.8%-47.3%. The poll was taken the day Victor announced he was dropping out; he took 2.8% of the vote. Just under one percent of voters were undecided, 1.3% said they were voting for someone else. Notably, Masters has gained three points since Emerson’s September poll, while Kelly has stagnated at 47%. Emerson’s poll found independents voting for Kelly, 50.4%-42.1%, but Masters was not losing as much support from his own party; 9.6% of Republicans said they were voting for Kelly.
Another poll of 1,051 likely voters conducted from October 31 – November 2 by independent pollster Big Data Poll found Masters with a lead of just over a full percentage point over Kelly, 48.7%-47.5%. Victor took 1.9% of the vote, and another 1.9% were undecided. Big Data Poll also found Kelly leading with independents, 47% to 44.2%; but again, Kelly siphoned fewer Republican voters away from Masters, just 8.6%. Big Data Poll Director Richard Baris explained on his podcast, “Inside the Numbers,” that Masters’ lead came from his small lead in Maricopa County, a solid support buffer in Pima County, senior citizens who did not buy Kelly’s rhetoric on Social Security, and inroads Masters has made with Hispanic voters, despite trailing slightly, 48.8% to 46.9%. He also speculated that Victor dropping out and endorsing Masters could be pivotal, since his supporters would favor Masters. “It’s an incredibly close race,” Baris said.
Victor dropped out and endorsed Masters on November 1. “At my invitation, Blake Masters and I had an unscripted, open, and recorded discussion and exchange of ideas on a variety of issues,” Victor said in a statement, via the Arizona Republic. “After that discussion, I believe it is in the best interests of freedom and peace to withdraw my candidacy and enthusiastically support Blake Masters for United States Senate. I intend to assist in any way reasonably possible to elect Blake.”
Victor consistently polled in the single digits throughout the race and was never believed to have a viable shot at winning. His single digit support could prove crucial for Masters in a close race, however. Ohio Predictive Insights released a poll measuring Victor’s support on Monday, pegging it at 3%. The same poll had Kelly and Masters separated by just 2%: 48% to 46%, respectively.
“This is another major boost of momentum as we consolidate our support,” Masters said in a statement to The New York Times on Tuesday.
Tim Pearce contributed to this report.