McGrath's campaign says they're leading in polling; Gray campaign "don't buy it"

04/24/2018 05:40 PM

The campaign for 6th Dist. Democratic candidate Amy McGrath says they’ve jumped Lexington Mayor Jim Gray in polling by 7 points, but the Gray campaign isn’t buying the results.

Citing a polling memo from Garin-Hart-Yang Research Group, Mark Nickolas says they’ve overtaken the popular frontrunner with their positive campaign advertisements.

McGrath leads Gray in the polling memo, with 42 percent to Gray’s 35 percent, state Sen. Reggie Thomas comes in with 6 percent, other candidates gather 3 percent of the vote, and 14 percent are undecided in the poll.
Garin- Hart-Yang conducted the survey of 404 likely Democratic primary voters in Kentucky’s 6th Dist. on April 17 and 19.

The survey, includes landlines and cellphones, and has a margin of error of
+/- 5 percent. The memo makes up a huge swing for McGrath compared to other internal polls.

Comparing the race to that of Republican outsider Rand Paul’s turnaround against establishment candidate Trey Grayson, McGrath’s campaign manager lauded the results.

“The poll confirms the incredible groundswell of support for Amy since she launched her candidacy in August,” Nickolas said in a statement. “Democratic voters are craving authentic new leaders in Congress who are not puppets of the political establishment and are fed-up with the political parties trying to hand-pick their candidates for them.”

Gray’s campaign cried foul on the results reported by McGrath’s campaign consultant weeks before the primary election.

“We don’t buy it,” Gray campaign manager Jamie Emmons said. “A candidate paying for a poll that says what they want it to say is about as surprising as Rick Pitino hiring a publicist to say he didn’t do anything wrong. It’s time to send Andy Barr packing, and Mayor Gray’s the one to do it.”

“”:In early April Gray’s campaign released an internal polling memo showing him leading Democratic opponents Amy McGrath and Reggie Thomas by 33 percent in a three-way race. The poll, conducted on March 3-6, showed Gray with 52 percent support among likely primary voters, compared to 19 percent for challenger Amy McGrath and 6 percent for state Sen. Reggie Thomas. Twenty-three percent of voters are undecided.

The poll was conducted by Democratic pollster Mark Mellman before either Gray or McGrath campaigns took to the airwaves, and sampled 400 likely voters in the 6th Congressional Dist. Interviews were conducted on cell phone and landlines, and carried a +/- 4.9 percent margin of error.

Meanwhile, Reggie Thomas’ campaign manager Leo Haggerty is content to let the Gray and McGrath campaigns have it out over who is in the lead.

“Jim Gray and Amy McGrath continue to play politics while Reggie continues to talk issues and take them direct to voters,” Haggerty told Pure Politics.

Nick Storm

Nick Storm is the Anchor and Managing Editor of Pure Politics available exclusively on Spectrum News. Pure Politics is the only nightly program dedicated to Kentucky politics. Nick covers all of the political heavyweights and his investigative work brings to light issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, like his coverage of the backlog of DNA rape kits waiting to be tested in Kentucky. Nick is also working on a feature length bio documentary Outlaw Poet: A documentary on Ron Whitehead. Pure Politics airs weeknight at 7 and 11:30 on Spectrum News. Follow Nick on Twitter @NStorm_Politics. Nick can be reached at 502-792-1107 or



  • Geoff Young for Congress wrote on April 25, 2018 10:27 AM :

    Too bad Amy McGrath (D-Neocon) is the only war criminal in the entire race. She knowingly served in an illegal war of aggression: the US invasion & destruction of Iraq from 2003 to today. That makes her an unrepentant war criminal. I wouldn’t be calling her a war criminal if she had gotten out of the Marines and joined America’s peace movement. But she didn’t have the courage or good judgment to do that. She’s precisely as pro-war & ignorant about foreign policy as Andy Barr (R-al Qaeda).

    The only candidates who aren’t pro-war neocons are Geoff Young (D), Rikka Wallin (Independent), and Frank Harris (Libertarian). That means that McGrath & all the other candidates are 100% unqualified to represent Kentucky’s 6th District.

  • Don B. wrote on April 29, 2018 10:48 AM :

    Has there ever been a worse “candidate” than Geoff Young for any office in the land? The guy’s been running for years, but has never knocked on one door, put up one yard sign, or shook one person’s hand in a coffee shop.

    He pays the filing fee, then yells at people who don’t pay attention to his yammering “campaign”.

    This year, Don Trump is a gift to Democrats — the most unpopular president in modern times — and instead of campaigning as the anti-Trump, Gee-off is running against the Democrats. Brilliant!

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