In the statewide race to be Minnesota’s next Attorney General, incumbent Keith Ellison (D) and his opponent Jim Shultz (R) are tied at 47% support of likely voters.
A new survey commissioned by the MinnPost asked 1,585 likely voters who they would choose for Attorney General. The vote was evenly split at 47% each, with only 5% of likely voters yet to make up their mind.
Minnesota has been one of the more democratic-leaning states in America to the point that if Shultz were to win, it would be the first GOP win in a statewide executive office election since 2006 when Tim Pawlenty (R) won reelection as the state’s governor.
In a recent debate, Schultz said his top priority as AG was “crime, crime, crime” while Ellison began the same debate by appealing to voters who are more concerned with abortion rights.
In a recent poll, the top priority for 41% of voters in Minnesota was reducing crime. That same poll showed that the next two most important topic for voters were growing the economy and reducing illegal immigration. The topic of abortion did not make the top three.
Keith Ellison lied to Minnesotans at last night’s debate when he stated he never supported defunding the police. But he supported the charter amendment to do so.
And now he is hosting an event with the two biggest defund advocates in America.
It is time for change! pic.twitter.com/UC0Mn206jK
— Jim Schultz for Attorney General (@JimForMN) October 18, 2022
According to a recent CBS News story, violent crime in Minnesota rose by 22% in 2021 and by almost 24% in the “Twin Cities Metro.” Republicans in the state have latched onto the issue of crime and it is serving them well in recent polls.
Looking deeper into the polls for AG, Ellison could be in real trouble of being the first democrat to lose a statewide election in more than 15 years. According to MinnPost, “A plurality of voters surveyed, 45%, had an unfavorable view of the incumbent. The poll found 36% had a favorable view of Ellison.”
The negative for Schultz, on the other hand, is name recognition, but those numbers are improving. “A plurality of people in the October survey — 39%— said they had never heard of Schultz, compared to 69% in June. The people who did know who Schultz is in the October poll were about evenly split in having a favorable, unfavorable or neutral view of Schultz,” the poll numbers showed.
With just weeks to go before the election, Schultz has a real chance to win if he can get his name out there and let people know his stance on crime. Ellison, on the other hand, has to fix an image that made less than 40% of Minnesotans have a favorable opinion of the incumbent AG.