It shows Republican state Treasurer John Kennedy leading an eight-candidate field with 32% and Republican U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany in second place with 10%. Here are the complete results:
Treasurer John Kennedy (R) – 32%.
U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany (R) – 10%.
PSC Foster Campbell (D) – 9%.
U.S. Rep. John Fleming (R) – 5%.
Retired AF Colonel Rob Maness (R) – 4%.
Attorney Caroline Fayard (D) – 4%.
Former state Sen. and ATC Commissioner Troy Hebert (I) – 2%.
PSC Eric Skrmetta (R) – 1%.
Undecided – 32%.
The poll results brought this comment from Campbell; “The new poll shows early trends towards a runoff between me and John Kennedy.”
But the poll brought a rebuke from Maness, who did not mince words. In a press release, he said he was dismayed by the Kennedy campaign’s blatant dishonesty in touting a recent poll commissioned by their campaign’s biggest donor (Lane Grigsby) as “independent” and is questioning its validity.
Maness went on to say, “These are hardly impressive numbers when you take into account his (Kennedy’s) near universal name ID resulting from his years as a career politician and explain why the Kennedy campaign is so desperate to use a clearly bought and paid for poll to push the false narrative that he is unbeatable.”
Pollster Bernie Pinsonat of SMOR, who conducted the poll, said in an interview with Steve Sabludowsky of Bayoubuzz.com, that the poll should be read with “caution”
Pinsonat admitted that the poll was distorted based upon which candidate had the most recognition. He noted, “John Kennedy is obviously benefiting from the budget debate in what we have a spending problem or a revenue problem. He is already up on TV.”
SMOR, in releasing the poll, noted that a total of 32% of those surveyed are undecided. Also, certain demographic groups are heavily undecided, which explains why the two Democratic contenders, Campbell and Fayard, are in single digits.
Among Democrats polled, 42% are undecided, among Republicans 21% are undecided, among blacks 52% are undecided, and among whites 25% are undecided.
To be sure, it is still early and the race is not yet in full swing. That is evidenced by the fact that more than 50% of respondents were not familiar with some candidates. They were most familiar with Kennedy, Campbell, Boustany, and Maness, in that order