Poll: Dem Northam leads GOP's Gillespie by 17 in Virginia gov race

Poll: Dem Northam leads GOP's Gillespie by 17 in Virginia gov race
© Greg Nash

Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam (D) leads Republican nominee Ed Gillespie by 17 points in the Virginia governor's race, according to a new poll from Quinnipiac University.

Northam received 53 percent among likely voters in Virginia, while Gillespie polled at 36 percent.

The Quinnipiac polls have had better results for Northam than other surveys. According to RealClearPolitics, Northam leads Gillespie by just 3.3 points in an average of several polls.

The results of the most recent Quinnipiac poll is up from the 14-point lead Northam held in one of the university’s polls earlier this month. 

"In 2014, Republican Ed Gillespie came oh-so-close to upsetting Democratic Sen. Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerSenate panel advances Trump IRS nominee Bipartisan bill would bring needed funds to deteriorating National Park Service infrastructure Senate Dems press for info on any deals from Trump-Putin meeting MORE, at least in part because 2014 was a Republican year and Gillespie benefited from the national pro-GOP mood. But with President Donald Trump's approval ratings in the dumpster in Virginia and in the nation, this year the shoe is on the other foot for Gillespie,” the assistant director of the Quinnipiac poll, Peter Brown, said in a statement.

Brown noted “the size and scope” of the Democrats’ lead in the race, saying it’s “impressive.”

"And history does not provide many examples of candidates who have come back from this large a deficit so close to the actual voting," said Brown.

Nearly three-quarters of nonwhite voters in the most recent survey, 72 percent, said they back Northam, while 15 percent are for Gillespie. But the two candidates are tied among white voters, with each receiving 46 percent. 

Both candidates have received the backing of prominent politicians, with Vice President Pence stumping for Gillespie earlier this month and former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaEx-White House stenographer: Trump is ‘lying to the American people’ Trump has the right foreign policy strategy — he just needs to stop talking The Hill's 12:30 Report — Trump faces bipartisan criticism over Putin presser, blames media for coverage MORE hitting the trail for Northam.

Sixty-percent of voters in Virginia, a state President TrumpDonald John TrumpNFL freezes policy barring players from protesting during anthem McConnell spokesman on Putin visit: 'There is no invitation from Congress' Petition urges University of Virginia not to hire Marc Short MORE lost in the general election by more than 5 points, said they disapprove of how Trump is managing his job as commander in chief. Only 34 percent said they approve.

The survey of 916 people was conducted from Oct. 25 to 29 by cellphones and landlines. It has a margin of error of 4.2 percentage points.