COLUMBUS, GA - DECEMBER 11: Attendees cheer as U.S. Vice President Mike Pence looks at them and raises his fist after speaking at a Defend The Majority campaign event on December 17, 2020 in Columbus, Georgia. Sen. David Perdue and Sen. Kelly Loeffler are facing a January 5 runoff election in Georgia. (Photo by Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images)

As was the case in November, a Political IQ survey of the upcoming U.S. Senate races in Georgia shows that the outcome of the January 5 election is far too close to call at this point.

The survey, conducted December 8 to 14, found that Democrat Jon Ossoff holds a statistically insignificant two-point advantage over Senator David Perdue. Ossoff earns 49% of the vote to Perdue’s 47%. In the other Senate race, it’s Democrat Raphael Warnock with a similarly insignificant 49% to 48% edge over appointed Senator Kelly Loeffler.

The similarity of results in both races suggests that a split decision in Georgia is unlikely. This view is supported by the fact that the overall favorability of all four candidates is roughly even, with the expected partisan divide. As a result, it is likely that the party doing a better job getting its marginal voters to the polls will win both races.

Other data shows that Trump and Biden supporters appear equally likely to vote in the January 5 Senate run-off. As was the case in the presidential election, Democrats are more likely to vote early and Republicans more likely to vote in-person on Election Day.

Both Democrats are projected to have a double-digit lead among early voters. Ossoff is up 56% to 42% among those who have voted or plan to vote early. Among those same voters, Warnock is up 55% to 42%. Both Republicans, however, enjoy a 61% to 33% lead among those who plan to vote in-person on Election Day.

Among those who say the election is Very Important to them, Ossoff and Perdue are tied at 49%. And, among that group, Loeffler has a two-point edge over Warnock (50% to 48%).

Data released earlier shows that 48% of Georgia’s likely voters want Republicans to control the Senate while 43% prefer the Democrats. Among voters who say this election is Very Important to them, 51% prefer Republican control while 44% take the opposite view.” 

Other data showed that 48% of Georgia voters support President Trump’s efforts to challenge the election results in Georgia and other states. An identical 48% are opposed.

Political IQ will not release additional surveys on this race. This is consistent with an approach advocated by Scott Rasmussen to address the deep problems plaguing the election forecasting industry. He suggested that public pollsters should focus less on the horse race and “offer more data designed to help forecasters and politicians understand America.” He added that polls “should offer a voter-centric view of the race, measuring underlying attitudes more than attempting to define likely voters. We should certainly ask about the horse race, but never forget that elections are supposed to be more about the voters than the candidates.”

Methodology

The survey of 1,417 Likely Voters in Georgia was conducted by Scott Rasmussen from December 8-14, 2020. Field work for the survey was conducted by RMG Research, Inc. Most respondents were contacted online or via text. They were selected from a list of Registered Voters and through a process of Random Digital Engagement. Additionally, 74 of the respondents were contacted via automated phone polling techniques. For purposes of this survey, Likely Voters were defined as those who say they have voted, will definitely vote, or are very likely to vote. Certain other screening questions were used as well. Quotas were applied to a larger sample of 1,696 Registered Voters which was then lightly weighted by geography, gender, age, race, education, and political party to reasonably reflect the state’s population. Other variables were reviewed to ensure that the final sample is representative of that population. The margin of sampling error is +/- 2.6 percentage points.

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