Matt Bevin has comfortable lead over Robert Goforth in new GOP primary poll

With one week until the Kentucky primary election, a new poll gives Gov. Matt Bevin a comfortable lead over his chief Republican gubernatorial challenger, state Rep. Robert Goforth.

But the survey of 600 likely GOP voters shows that the incumbent governor is barely over 50% after years of quarreling with his own party.

Other statewide GOP races in Kentucky appear wide open, according to a poll released Tuesday by Cygnal, a national polling and research firm.

The Cygnal survey, conducted May 10 to May 12, has Bevin leading Goforth 56% to 18%, with 23% of voters still undecided.

“Governor Bevin is reaping the benefits of high name ID, which appears to be too much for Goforth to overcome this close to election day,” Brent Buchanan, Cygnal’s president and founder, said in a news release.

Bevin is seeking a second term with a new running mate, state Sen. Ralph Alvarado, of Winchester.

Goforth, a farmer and pharmacist from East Bernstadt, was first elected to the General Assembly in a special election last year and is running with Lawrence County Attorney Mike Hogan.

“This won’t be a question of if Bevin will win on Tuesday; it’s a question of how high he can go above 50%,” said Chris Kratzer, Cygnal’s Vice President of Research and Analysis.

Still, while his primary prospects are looking fairly bright, the poll showed about 32% of GOP voters have an “unfavorable” opinion and 21% hold a “very unfavorable” opinion of Bevin.

Lexington real estate developer Ike Lawrence (1.6%) finished in third for GOP gubernatorial candidates, just ahead of realtor and Boone County bus driver and licensed realtor William Woods (1.3%).

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