Gov. Greg Abbott (R) maintains his single-digit – but outside the margin of error – lead over Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke (D), according to a new Dallas Morning News/Univ. of Tyler poll.

Abbott leads O’Rourke, 46%-39%, with 13% of respondents split among Libertarian Mark Tippetts (3%), Green Party candidate Delilah Barrios (3%) and “someone else” (6%). Historically, minor party candidates combined receive 3% or less of the vote in gubernatorial contests.

The bulk of support for Tippetts, Barrios and “someone else” comes from independent voters, who otherwise favor O’Rourke, 34%-31%, over Abbott. When combined with “don’t know” (4%), “Someone else” (18%), Tippetts (5%) and Barrios (5%) combine for 35% among independent voters, more than either major party candidate.

About 1 in 8 Democrats favor Abbott compared to about 1 in 12 Republicans who favor O’Rourke. Hispanic/Latino voters favor O’Rourke, 45%-38%, while white voter support Abbott, 57%-30%.

As we have seen in other polls, Abbott’s lead grows with the certainty of voting. Among those “certain to vote,” Abbott leads O’Rourke, 51%-41%, with only 8% supporting a minor party candidate or “someone else.” Nine out of every 10 voters are “certain” (73%) of their support for a particular candidate or “probably will not change [their] mind” (18%).

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R) leads Mike Collier, 36%-28%, among all respondents and 42%-32% among those who are “certain to vote.” Atty. Gen. Ken Paxton (R) leads Rochelle Garza, 34%-32%, among all respondents and 38%-36% among “certain to vote” respondents. Interestingly, Garza’s support among Democrats (68%) is eight points higher than Collier’s (60%), while Paxton sees a nearly identical drop in support among Republicans (64%) compared to Patrick (71%).

The poll of 1,384 registered voters was conducted in English and Spanish by phone and via online respondent panels. It was in the field August 1-7 and has a stated margin of error of ±2.6%.

CD34 (Lean D): U.S. Rep. Vicente Gonzalez (D-McAllen) leads U.S. Rep. Mayra Flores (R-Los Indios), 47%-43%, according to a new RMG Research poll conducted for U.S. Term Limits. Flores takes a 45%-40% lead after respondents are told she supports the group’s term limits pledge while Gonzalez does not. The poll of 400 “likely midterm voters” was conducted July 23-August 1 and has a margin of error of ±4.9%.

Libertarian Candidates: The Republican Party of Texas has asked the Texas Supreme Court to remove nearly two dozen Libertarian candidates from the 2022 ballot. “None of them have paid their required filing fee or filed their required signature petitions,” so the suit argues the Libertarian Party of Texas should remove them from the ballot. A similar action was attempted in 2020 but filed after the deadline for removing candidates from the ballot. The deadline this year is August 26.

Gillespie County: The entire staff of the election office has resigned following threats and stalking by election deniers, conspiracy theorists and “people who are pretty fanatical and radical,” according to a report by the Fredericksburg Standard’s Brent Burgess.

“Unfortunately, they have driven out our elections administrator, and not just her, but the staff. Everybody has resigned,” said County Judge Mark Stroeher (R). “The job has been made much more difficult than probably it should be because of some individuals who are continuing to question how they are doing things.”

Former President Donald Trump carried Gillespie Co. with 79% of the vote in 2020.

“I don’t know who we’re going to hold an election,” Stroeher said, adding he would contact the Secretary of State for guidance.

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