GOP guber poll: Undecided 54.7%; Black 13.9%

A poll commissioned by Tennesseans for Conservative Action, which bills itself as a “voter education” group that “stands for constitutionally conservative principles,” found that about 55 percent of likely Republican voters are undecided about who to support in the 2018 gubernatorial primary.

But 82 percent view President Donald Trump favorably and 54 percent think Butch Jones is doing a good job as University of Tennessee football coach.

TCA says it surveyed 822 Tennesseans on the evenings of August 28 and August 29, 2017 who self-identified as likely to vote in the August 2018 Republican primary. The margin of error is +/- 3.42%. Its website gives no other details, but Mark Braden, a political operative and co-founder founder of ACA, says it was conducted by Cygnal, a Montgomery, Ala., polling and communications consulting firm.

The gubernatorial primary poll results: Diane Black 13.9 percent; Randy Boyd 11.6 percent; Beth Harwell 7.4 percent; Mae Beavers 5.6 percent; Bill Lee 3.3 percent; Kay White 0.7 percent; undecided 57.4 percent.

The group posts two releases on its polling results, one including the GOP gubernatorial race (HERE) and the other focused largely on football and alcohol with a Donald Trump popularity question thrown in along with the Butch Jones popularity question (HERE).

Excerpt from the latter:

Our survey found President Trump has a rock-solid job approval rating of 82.3%

Only 7% of voters who approve of President Trump also disapprove of Butch Jones job performance

85% of self-identified beer drinkers, 79% of self-identified wine drinkers and 81% of self-identified liquor drinkers approve of President Trump.

The posting leaves the strong impression that TCA is promoting Sunday liquor sales, an issue that will likely be before the legislature next year. (Update: Braden says that’s not the case; ACA leaders were just curious and looking for interesting results.) The poll found large majorities want “government to get out the way when deciding when businesses can be open and closed.”

Another excerpt:

Big Government Bad, I’ll Have A Drink: Over 95% of Tennesseans who had a drink in the last week believe government should not be involved when businesses are open and closed.

Big Government Bad, I’m Good With Sweet Tea: Over 92% of Tennesseans who stated they had not had a drink in the last week or don’t drink believe government should not be involved when businesses are open and closed.

Tennessee Star observes that the poll results — at least insofar as Trump popularity and undecided gubernatorial primary results go – are in line with a poll it conducted in early June.

TCA was established in 2015 by Braden, who has worked for Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker; former state GOP Chair Robin Smith and Gregory Gleaves, a former state GOP executive director and political consultant who once was Speaker Beth Harwell’s chief of staff. A previous post (fromwhen it was started) is HERE.

UPDATE Note: Robin Smith advises via email that she resigned from TCA last year.

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