A recent poll commissioned by the Club for Growth’s political arm asked voters how they would feel if President Donald Trump endorsed Tommy Tuberville in Alabama’s March 31 U.S. Senate primary runoff.
On Tuesday around 9:00 p.m. CT, Trump did just that, throwing his full support behind the former Auburn University head football coach.
Respondents to the Club for Growth poll said that if Trump were to make such an endorsement, 58% would choose Tuberville while 34% said they would support former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions. Another 8% were undecided.
The survey was conducted from March 4-5, and as such, only represents voters’ attitudes at that point in time. This immediately followed the March 3 primary.
Sessions responded to the Trump endorsement later Tuesday night, saying that Trump was free to do as he wished but Alabama voters were the ones who got to make the ultimate decision on who will be their Senator.
We are Alabama. Nobody tells us how to vote or what to do.
— Jeff Sessions (@jeffsessions) March 11, 2020
The Club for Growth poll was conducted by the national firm WPA Intelligence. It sampled 500 likely Republican primary runoff voters using live telephone interviews. The margin of error was +/- 4.4%. A survey memo is available here.
The initial ballot test question (when voters were asked who they plan to vote for in the primary) yielded a four-point lead for Tuberville:
When voters were asked who they would support if President Trump endorsed Tommy Tuberville the numbers moved in a major way:
It should be noted that Club for Growth’s polling was one of the only pieces of publicly available data to accurately reflect Tuberville’s surge to first place before the primary.
In the March 3 primary, Tuberville ended up leading the field with 33.39%, followed by Sessions at 31.65% and Byrne at 24.89%. Club for Growth’s polling conducted February 18-19 showed Tuberville at 32%, Sessions at 29% and Congressman Bradley Byrne (AL-01) at 17%.
Club for Growth strongly supported Jeff Sessions in past elections and urged him to run for his old seat this past fall.
The Club has not made any statement of preference about who the group is supporting in the runoff. The Super-PAC affiliated with the organization spent $688,000 opposing Byrne’s Senate candidacy.
Henry Thornton is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can contact him by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @HenryThornton95.