Support Public Service Journalism

NPI releases Lieutenant Governor polling ahead of Heck-Liias debate

This afternoon, ahead of tonight’s Lieutenant Governor debate sponsored by the Washington State Debate Coalition, the Northwest Progressive Institute released its October 2020 polling in the contest for this downballot position, finding U.S. Representative Denny Heck with a two-to-one advantage over State Senator Marko Liias.

Both Heck and Liias are Democrats; all of the Republicans who filed were eliminated in the August Top Two election.

32% of respondents to NPI’s survey, which was conducted by Public Policy Polling, said they were voting for Heck, while 16% said they were voting for Liias. 52% were not sure.

NPI announced the finding on its long-form publication, The Cascadia Advocate.

Because no Republican finished in the Top Two for Lieutenant Governor, we saw a high number of undecided voters in our polling,” said Northwest Progressive Institute founder and Executive Director Andrew Villeneuve. “Washingtonians are used to being able to choose from a Democrat and a Republican, but Washington’s Top Two system not infrequently yields unsatisfying general election runoffs between candidates from the same party who are ideologically similar. That has now happened twice in two cycles for a statewide partisan office.”

Heck, who has represented the South Sound for nearly a decade in Congress, has a clear advantage despite not having the contest sewn up.

“Representative Heck has more name recognition and a higher profile as a federal elected official than Senator Liias does,” Villeneuve noted.

Heck serves on the House Intelligence Committee, which played a key role in the impeachment of Donald Trump. Heck also represents about one tenth of the state, whereas Senator Liias has represented about one forty-ninth of the state. Heck is well positioned to win this race. However, Liias still has a chance, if he can persuade most of those ‘not sure’ voters to back his candidacy.”

NPI’s survey of six hundred and ten likely 2020 Washington State voters was in the field from Wednesday, October 14th, through Thursday, October 15th.

It utilizes a blended methodology, with automated phone calls to landlines and text message answers from cell phone only respondents.

The poll has a margin of error of +/- 4.0% at the 95% confidence interval.

This news release was provided by the Northwest Progressive Institute

Your support matters.

Public service journalism is important today as ever. If you get something from our coverage, please consider making a donation to support our work. Thanks for reading our stuff.