More poll data from Patrick Gonzales, this time in the Baltimore mayoral race:
Citywide, 27% of likely April voters say they back former Mayor Sheila Dixon; 18% support State Senator Catherine Pugh; 14% say they’ll vote for 12th District Councilman Carl Stokes; 7% back Nick Mosby; 5% each for Elizabeth Embry and David Warnock; with 21% undecided.
Dixon actually polls better among men than women, earning 31% of the male vote and 25% among women. She received 35% support from black voters, but only 10% of the white vote.
Catherine Pugh is in a strong second place position. If, as many expect, either (or both) Mosby and Stokes exits the race, Pugh seems well positioned to consolidate a good chunk of that support. Dixon, with her well documented legal troubles that forced her from office in 2010, is a lightning rod - voters either love her or hate her. There’s not a lot of middle ground for her. She’s probably at or around her ceiling in this poll (factoring in the undecideds, she tops out at 30-35%’ I think), with not a lot of room for growth, at least with this many choices in the race.
The big wild card is Warnock. His ad buys are substantial and if he can consolidate the white vote and attract a modicum of black support, he’s a serious threat. But he needs as many candidates as possible to stay in the race and fracture the black vote. See O’Malley, Martin, 1999 mayoral. One on one, he stands very little chance against Dixon or Pugh. But with four or five candidates in the race, his odds go up substantially.
Watch the campaign finance reports. They’re due today. If Stokes and/or Mosby post mediocre numbers, there should be serious conversations in their camps about whether to stay in the race. i think we’ll see some shaking out of the field in the next two weeks or so, at which point we will have a much ebetter sense of how it’s going to play out in April.