Recent polls seen by the El Paso Politics suggest that Dee Margo’s campaign is in trouble. Although the general notion remains that the mayoral race will result in a runoff between the incumbent Dee Margo and Oscar Lesser, the polling suggests that Dee Margo will barely make the runoff.
The polls seen by El Paso Politics show Oscar Leeser significantly in the lead at just below the 50% threshold to outright win the race. Polling significantly behind is Dee Margo at less than 20% of those polled.
Vying for third place is Veronica Carbajal who is slightly ahead of Carlos Gallinar with both polling in the mid-teens.
It is clear that the Margo campaign and some, if not all his opponents are aware of how vulnerable he is.
However, polls are just a snapshot in time that target likely voters. Gallinar has been targeting typical El Paso voters via his support from Veronica Escobar and Beto O’Rourke. Carlos Gallinar is running a traditional campaign in the time of the pandemic.
Carbajal, on the other hand, is running a campaign heavy on social media and outreach to progressives. The voters Carbajal has targeted are not normally included in likely voter polling. Depending on Carbajal’s mobilization of first-time voters via her social media campaign and outreach towards progressives, she may receive a boost when the final ballots are counted.
Although the Carbajal Campaign feels it is within striking distance of placing for a runoff, according to political insiders who have spoken to us on the condition that we do not name them, the early numbers analyzed by El Paso Politics show that voters 35 years and younger are less than 20% of the ballots cast so far.
This is slightly higher than normal but not significant enough to give Carbajal the push she needs to make the runoff.
The Margo camp is likely aware of the low Dee Margo is polling and, as a result, are just hoping to force a runoff.
Unfortunately for the Margo camp, incumbents face an exceedingly difficult race in a runoff with the challenger being the likely winner.
It is important to note that Election Day voters tend to have already decided who they will cast their vote for thus their votes will not likely sway the early voting results by much. If anything, Leeser and Margo will get slight bumps on Election Day ballots.
According to the Texas Secretary of State, over the last ten years on average, 32% of the votes were cast in Early Voting. However, in the last five years, those who cast ballots in early voting dropped to about 22%.
As of yesterday, total ballots cast in El Paso in early voting is 153,578, according to the El Paso County Elections Department.
In 2018, according to the Texas Secretary of State 205,879 ballots were cast. Of those, 130,505 were cast in early voting. Although there are four days left to count in early voting in this cycle, the ballots cast have already surpassed 2018 early voters.
Should the polls hold through election day, the likely winner will be Oscar Leeser, with or without a runoff.
The margin of error for the polling we saw was in the range of 4%.