Pugh Surging In Baltimore Mayoral Contest

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State Senator Catherine Pugh has vaulted into a narrow lead in a new poll in the race for Balimore mayor, the Sun reports this morning.

Pugh, whose support has surged in recent weeks, is now favored by 26 percent of likely voters in the Democratic primary. That’s two points higher than the 24 percent who back Dixon, who has led the field for months. Businessman David L. Warnock, who has spent more than $650,000 on television ads, is in third place with 10 percent.

“It’s a tight race between the two leaders,” said Steve Raabe, president of OpinionWorks, the Annapolis-based firm that conducted the poll. “Sheila Dixon has been matched and potentially overtaken by Catherine Pugh. People who decided recently are going toward Pugh.”

City Councilman Nick J. Mosby was in fourth with 6 percent, followed by lawyer Elizabeth Embry with 5 percent and Councilman Carl Stokes with 3 percent. All other candidates in the crowded field of 13 Democrats — including prominent Black Lives Matter activist DeRay Mckesson and engineer Calvin Young III — garnered less than 1 percent.

Comparing the results of this poll with the two prior polls on the race, its clear that Pugh has seized the momentum.

In the November Sun poll, the  results were as follows:

In January, Gonzales did a poll which showed little movement as the campaigns were just getting underway.

A survey conducted by Gonzales Research & Marketing Strategies from Jan. 11 through Jan. 17 showed Dixon leading the race with 27 percent of respondents saying they would vote for her. She was followed by Pugh (18 percent) and Stokes (14 percent). Mosby was in fourth (7 percent), followed by Embry and Warnock with 5 percent each. About 21 percent of those polled said they were undecided.

Pugh has doubled her vote in four months, from 13 to 26%. Dixon’s largely held steady, only dropping 3%, showing the firmness of her support. And David Warnock, buoyed by $650,000 in TV ads, has doubled his support from 5 to 10%, although I have to believe that he’s disappointed in these latest poll results.

The big loser in this poll is Carl Stokes and to a lesser extent Nick Mosby. Stokes has seen his support completely collapse, dropping from 14 to 3%. Mosby, who’d shown some momentum from November to January, saw it dissipate completely in the current poll, and he’s been surpassed by David Warnock.

Elizabeth Embry, whose surprisingly strong fundraising report in January led to increased interest in her campaign, has perhaps been damaged the most by the presence and ad spending of David Warnock. She’s stuck at 5% while Warnoxk has moved up.

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