Republican Pat McCrory has only a narrow lead over Democrat Walter Dalton in the governor's race when Libertarian candidate Barbara Howe is included, according to a new poll.
McCrory, the former Charlotte mayor, leads with 46 percent over Dalton, the lieutenant governor with 44 percent, with Howe at 7 percent, according to a poll conducted for the Civitas Institute, a Raleigh-based conservative advocacy group.
That is a much tighter than a May Civitas Poll that was was a head-to-head match, which showed McCrory with a 10-point lead over Dalton. The May poll did not include Howe.
The spin: “Although the polls differ somewhat in format, the data suggests that a significant portion of McCrory's support shifted to Howe when given the chance,” said Francis De Luca, Civitas president. “To win those votes in November, McCrory likely will have to persuade libertarian-minded voters that he too wants to and can rein in out-of-control government.''
The survey of 600 N.C. registered voters was conducted by National Research Inc. of Holmdel, NJ and had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.