Gov. Greg Abbott (R) leads Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke among likely voters, 49%-42%, according to a new Univ. of Houston/Texas Southern Univ. poll. Abbott’s lead climbs to 12 points among “almost certain voters,” continuing a trend we’ve observed in polls of Democratic challengers losing ground as the likelihood of voting increases. Abbott also clears 50% among “almost certain voters” (53%-41%).

Among “likely voters,” Abbott leads O’Rourke among independents, 47%-25%, with 23% undecided. Abbott leads among Anglo voters (61%-32%), older voters (61%-33%), voters with a high school or less education (58%-37%), men (55%-37%), voters with a 2-year degree or some college (51%-38%) and Gen X voters (51%-40%). O’Rourke leads among Black voters (72%-15%), Millennials (55%-34%), Gen Z voters (54%-31%) and Hispanic/Latino voters (53%-38%). They are tied among women, 45%-45%, and O’Rourke has a 47%-44% lead among voters with a 4-year degree or more, well within that subsample’s margin of error.

Nearly identical to Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R) leads Democratic challenger Mike Collier, 49%-43%, among “likely voters.” His lead increases to 53%-42% among “almost certain voters.” The demographic splits are for the most part within a point or two of the Abbott-O’Rourke numbers. Patrick’s lead among independents (45%-28%) is a bit narrower than Abbott’s advantage.

Atty. Gen. Ken Paxton (R) leads Democratic challenger Rochelle Garza, 45%-42%, among “likely voters.” As with Abbott and Patrick, Paxton’s lead increases to 49%-41% among “almost certain voters.” Paxton leads but has less support among the demographic groups who support Abbott and Patrick. However, Garza does not pick up those voters. Support for her among groups favoring O’Rourke and Collier is largely unchanged.

The survey of 2,140 adults (including 1,312 “likely voters” and 1,012 “almost certain voters) was conducted in English and Spanish and, apparently, online. It was in the field August 11-29 and has a stated margin of error of ±2.7% for “likely voters” and ±3.1% for “almost certain voters.” Margins of error among subsamples will be higher and potentially more volatile.

LTGOV (Lean R): Retiring Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr. (D-Brownsville) endorsed Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick (R).

Bailey Co.: County Judge Sherri Harrison (R) has been jailed following a criminal indictment on an official oppression charge. A petition to remove her from office, which was filed by County Attorney Michaela Lee (R), remains pending in district court. Harrison, who has served as the county’s top elected official since 2005, lost her re-election bid in the Republican primary by 46 votes (53%-47%).

Harris Co.: County Judge Lina Hidalgo (D) leads Republican challenger Alexandra del Moral Mealer, 52%-42%, among “likely voters,” according to the previously mentioned Univ. of Houston/Texas Southern Univ. poll. A small sample size (n=195) provides a stated margin of error of ±7.0%, which means Hidalgo’s lead is within the poll’s margin of error.

The del Moral Mealer campaign released a new ad focusing on her biography and crime in the county.

The ad is reportedly part of a $1.5M ad buy, including broadcast and digital.

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