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Poll: Brooks, Durant battle for second in U.S. Senate race; Gov. Kay Ivey facing runoff

New polling released Friday by ForestPAC, the political arm of the Alabama Forestry Association, shows heated competition in both the U.S. Senate and gubernatorial GOP primary elections.

The poll, which was conducted by McLaughlin & Associates May 16-19, consisted of 500 likely Republican voters. Respondents were surveyed evenly between landline, cellphone and text message.

U.S. Senate

According to the poll, former Business Council of Alabama head Katie Britt continues to maintain the lead in the hotly contested race to replace the seat held by retiring U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Tuscaloosa).

The poll’s results show U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville) and former “Black Hawk Down” aviator Mike Durant within the margin of error for second place, which reflects trends from other polls released within the past week.

Poll results are as follows:

  • Katie Britt: 37.4%
  • Mo Brooks: 25.2%
  • Mike Durant: 24.0%
  • Undecided: 13.4%

While Britt’s favorability among the Republican electorate was well above her competitors’, Durant edged out his opponents as voters’ leading second choice.

Brooks’ momentum appears to come at an opportune time for the six-term congressman, as his last-minute surge coincides with Durant’s downward slide amid a heavy onslaught of attack ads thrown at the U.S. Army veteran’s candidacy.

Governor

The ForestPAC-commissioned gubernatorial poll shows the prospects of a runoff election increasing only four days out from the upcoming GOP primary.

The survey suggests Gov. Kay Ivey is just over five points shy of avoiding a runoff, while businessman Tim James and former U.S. ambassador Lindy Blanchard are in nearly a statistical tie for second place.

Poll results are as follows:

  • Kay Ivey: 44.6%
  • Tim James: 17.5%
  • Lindy Blanchard: 17.1%
  • Lew Burdette: 7.9%
  • Dean Odle: 4.4%
  • Undecided: 8.5%

A ForestPAC poll which utilized largely the same metrics as Friday’s survey released last week showed the incumbent governor holding 51.8% support among the GOP electorate, with both James and Blanchard in the 15% range.

Should Ivey’s two closest opponents continue to eat into her numbers, the race to determine who will occupy the governor’s mansion for the next four years will be prolonged another month.

The primary election will take place May 24, 2022. Should no candidate earn a plurality of the vote, a runoff election will be held June 21, 2022.

Dylan Smith is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL