Poll shows Cheney ahead of Lummis in potential Senate race


CHEYENNE – A poll published Wednesday shows U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney leading former Congresswoman Cynthia Lummis by 20 percentage points in a potential race for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Mike Enzi.

The annual poll from Montana State University-Billings previously focused exclusively on Montana. Jason Adkins, the MSUB political science professor who conducted the poll, said Wyoming was included this year partially because it is often overlooked in national discussions.

“It made sense, just from a newsworthiness perspective, and Wyoming doesn’t get polled very often, in general,” Adkins said.

Though 38% of Wyoming respondents were still undecided on the Republican Senate primary, 37% said they would vote for Cheney, were she to run for the seat, while 17% were in favor of Lummis. The poll has a margin of error of 7.4 percentage points.

Cheney has not announced whether she will run for the seat, and Adkins said her name was included in the poll to give respondents every potential option.

After announcing her candidacy in July, Lummis said it would be “a real barn burner of a race” if Cheney decides to run against her.

The poll also showed strong approval ratings for Gov. Mark Gordon, who was elected last year. According to the poll, 73% of respondents said they approve of the governor’s performance, 22% were undecided and just 5% disapproved.

Michael Pearlman, the governor’s communications director, said Gordon was flattered that voters have approved of his work following through on campaign promises.

“The governor doesn’t take anything for granted,” Pearlman said in an email. “Regardless of poll numbers, he will continue to make decisions based on what he believes is best for Wyoming’s people and for the future of the state.”

Along with Gordon, President Donald Trump also saw high levels of support in the poll. Following anti-impeachment rallies in Cheyenne and Jackson last week, the poll showed 77% of Wyoming respondents disapproved of the impeachment inquiry launched in the U.S. House of Representatives last month.

“They’re strongly backing the president,” Adkins said. “But I think the clear takeaway is that it’s still early, and there are lots of undecided voters.”

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