Arizona Poll: Sen. Jeff Flake Has Weak Support Going into 2018 GOP Primary

AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin

An Arizona Republican senator, who was most adamantly opposed to President-elect Donald J. Trump, is in for a tough reelection campaign in 2018, according to a Remington Research Group poll. The poll was conducted Nov. 15 and Nov. 16 with 1,122 likely Republican primary voters in that state and carries a 2.93 percent margin of error.

“Jeff Flake is currently in a very precarious position,” said Titus Bond, director of Remington Research Group. “The data show that Flake’s image amongst Republican primary voters is in bad shape and that carries over to the ballot where he only realizes 35 percent support on the high end. It remains early but he is certainly the most vulnerable incumbent to a primary challenge.”

The data show that Donald Trump is popular amongst Arizona’s Republican primary electorate. Eighty-two percent hold a favorable view of the President-elect, while only 10 percent view him unfavorably, Bond said.

Flake is viewed unfavorably by roughly half of Republicans. Thirty percent view Flake favorably, while 49 percent view the senator in a negative light.

The poll showed that State Treasurer Jeff DeWit leads Flake in the head-to-head with 42 percent support compared to Flake’s 33 percent and 25 percent undecided.

DeWit was the chief operating officer of the Trump campaign.

Dr. Kelli Ward, who lost to Sen. John McCain in the 2016 Arizona GOP primary, told Breitbart News she is challenging Flake in 2018. DeWit has not made an announcement.

Both Arizona senators skipped the 2016 Republican National Convention–Flake told reporters he had to mow his lawn.

Ward is tied with Flake in the head-to-head with both garnering the support of 35 percent of Republicans and 30 percent undecided.

In the three-way contest, DeWit leads the field with 38 percent, followed by Flake with 30 percent, Ward with 15 percent, and 17 percent undecided.

In 2016, Flake made an effort to embrace President Barack Obama, while exhibiting hostility to Trump.

Flake defended the president’s normalizing relations with Cuba and joined Obama for ceremonies there. The senator called for the Republican-controlled Senate to move forward with the president’s nomination of Merrick Garland for the Supreme Court. Flake joked that Trump would throw him into prison at Gitmo and even announced he was voting for Evan McMullin, the former senior policy director for Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R.-Wash.) for president, instead of Trump.

Bond told Breitbart News Flake could pay a price for his opposition of Trump.

“Key takeaway is that it appears Jeff Flake’s criticisms of Donald Trump has left him vulnerable to a serious primary challenge in 2018,” Bond said.

“The data show that Trump has unified the Republican base in Arizona. Jeff Flake has polarized conservatives in his state, and you cannot win a Republican primary without them,” he said.

“Flake has some serious work to do in the next year.”

The survey was paid for and commissioned independent of any campaign or committee.


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