Contradicting a recent poll showing a dead heat, the latest Univ. of Texas/Texas Tribune poll shows Gov. Greg Abbott (R) leading hypothetical challenger Beto O’Rourke (D), 46%-37%. One in 10 respondents had no opinion, and 7% said they would vote for “someone else.”

The poll found that Texans have a generally negative evaluation of job performance across the board. Abbott’s overall job approval rating is 43/48, which represents a slight improvement from the August poll (41/50). Abbott’s rating is nonetheless better than President Biden’s approval rating, which has been steadily growing more negative and now sits at 35/55. In August, Biden’s job approval rating was 40/51, itself down from the June (43/47) and April (44/46) polls.

Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R) and Atty. Gen. Ken Paxton (R) are well ahead of their primary rivals. Abbott has the support of 56% of Republican registered voters while “no opinion” (16%) leads Allen West (13%), former Sen. Don Huffines (7%) and Chad Prather (4%). Patrick also stands at 56% with no named rivals. Paxton is just under 50% but comfortably leads Land Comm. George P. Bush (16%). Rep. Matt Krause (3%) and former Supreme Court Justice Eva Guzman (2%) barely registered among the respondents.

Seven out of 10 Democratic registered voters would support O’Rourke for the gubernatorial nomination should he enter the race. As with Patrick’s primary, no other candidates were named by the poll. “No opinion” dwarfs the named Democratic candidates for lieutenant governor and attorney general.

The survey of 1,200 registered voters was conducted online and in the field October 22-31. The stated margin of error for the overall sample was ±2.83%.

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