Austin The Democratic candidate for governor, Beto O’Rourke, stated on Saturday that he was taking the most recent polls that showed him trailing Gov. Greg Abbott by mid-single digits with “a grain of salt.”
On the third day of The Texas Tribune Festival on Saturday, O’Rourke had a one-hour conversation with staff writer Lawrence Wright from The New Yorker. Less than two months remain until the November election, in which he will be running against the incumbent Republican.
According to the Real Clear Politics polling average, O’Rourke is now 7.5 points behind Abbott. According to a Spectrum News/Siena College poll released on Wednesday, O’Rourke fell short of Abbott among likely voters, 50% to 43%.
O’Rourke reiterated the well-worn political adage that the only poll that matters is the one taken on Election Day while speaking with Wright. He also emphasized how, in the highly publicized 2018 U.S. Senate election, he surpassed polls by defeating Republican U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz by just three percentage points. Regarding the most recent polls, O’Rourke stated, I take them with a grain of salt.
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In the wake of the US Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade, O’Rourke claimed he is counting on a significant turnout of people who disagree with the most recent abortion restrictions in Texas. In states like Kansas, where a vote on abortion rights was held in August and Democrats unexpectedly won by a sizable margin, he noted that the topic of abortion rights has electrified voters.
In response to a query from the crowd, O’Rourke said he didn’t regret interrupting Abbott’s press conference in the days that followed the May school shooting in Uvalde.