Larry Fitzgerald Tops Ranking of Potential Statewide Candidates
McCains, Arizona Senators, and Statewide Officeholders also Make Top 10
PHOENIX (February 9th, 2021)- As Larry Fitzgerald decides between another year on the gridiron or hanging up his cleats, he might want to consider a career in elected office.
OH Predictive Insights (OHPI) is releasing its first-ever Power Rankings of popular (and sometimes unpopular) figures in Arizona. Fitzgerald, the longtime Arizona Cardinals wide receiver, tops the inaugural list.
Sports figures top the list of most popular potential candidates as 2022 approaches. Next year features the fourth straight election for US Senator as well as open gubernatorial and attorney general offices.
A trio of Cardinals top the OHPI list – Fitzgerald, former QB Kurt Warner and team CEO Michael Bidwill would make the most formidable candidates in the state.
While John McCain, who passed away in 2018, is the highest-ranking Republican (No. 4 overall), Secretary of State Katie Hobbs is the most popular Democrat (No. 5 overall). State Treasurer Kimberly Yee and Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego, both often mentioned for statewide office, clock in at No. 7 and No. 9, respectively.
Given the US Senate’s 50-50 split, Sen. Mark Kelly’s reelection battle in 2022 will have national consequences, and Gov. Doug Ducey faces the end of his maximum two terms. No significant candidate has stepped into the fray for either office yet.
“Every important statewide office, congressional district, legislative district, and a Senate seat will all be on the ballot next year,” says Mike Noble, OHPI Chief of Research. “With that in mind, it’s important to get a sense of potential candidates early. The OHPI Power Rankings do just that.”
OHPI based its Power Rankings on a recent survey that asked voters their opinions of the 50 individuals and what they look for in a statewide office candidate. Notably, the ranking does not consider an individual’s likelihood to run for office – explaining the presence of Joe Biden, Donald Trump, and John McCain.
Other than name ID and net favorability — which are common indicators of a candidate’s electoral potential – OHPI has developed what it calls a “Demographic and Experience (D/E) Score” to help rank candidates who are relatively unknown to the electorate. OHPI considered a potential candidates’ political party, age, ethnicity, gender, state of birth, several different elected offices they may have held, among a number of other characteristics when assigning this score.
Notice there is very little overlap between the candidates on the “OHPI Power Top 10” list, which emphasizes a potential candidate’s Name ID and favorability, and the “D/E Score Top 10,” which ignores those measures entirely. Candidates who rank higher on the D/E score than low on the power ranking (e.g., Member of the Arizona Board of Regents Karrin Taylor-Robson or former Nogales Mayor Marco Lopez) have the potential to make strong gubernatorial or senatorial candidates if they have the funds to boost their Name ID and keep a positive image among voters.
Links to full OHPI Power Rankings, Name ID, Net Fav, and Demographic and Experience Scores, as well as crosstabs from the poll, can be found below.
Methodology: This poll was conducted as an online opt-in panel survey. The survey was completed by OH Predictive Insights from January 11th to January 18th, 2021, from an Arizona Statewide Registered Voter sample. The sample demographics were weighted to accurately reflect gender, region, age, party affiliation, ethnicity, and education. The sample size was 1,022 completed surveys, with an MoE of ± 3.1%. Numbers may not equal 100% due to rounding.
OHPI Power Score: This score considers name ID, net favorability, and OHPI’s Demographic and Experience score but puts a greater emphasis on name ID and net favorability than the other measure.
Demographic and Experience Score: This score assigns potential candidates points based on how well their personal characteristics match voters’ preferences. For example, 38% of voters preferred a candidate who is a Democrat; thus, the Democrats got 38% of a point. Thirty-seven percent chose a Republican, so Republicans got 37% of a point – and so on. The following characteristics compose this score: party, political experience, birth state, county of residence/representation, experience as a US Senator, experience as a US Congressman, experience as a Governor, experience as a statewide office, experience as an Arizona State Senator, experience as an Arizona State Representative, electoral record, gender, age, racial/ethnic minority status, and parental status. Party, age, and gender play a larger share in these rankings than the other characteristics.
About OH Predictive Insights: As a nonpartisan market research, predictive analytics, and public opinion polling firm, Phoenix-based OH Predictive Insights provides accurate polling, focus groups, data analytics, and advanced targeted marketing to political and non-political clients alike. With leading professionals in the advertising, communication, polling, and political arenas, OH Predictive Insights serves political and non-political clients looking to improve their footing with key stakeholders and consumers. For more information, please call 480-313-1837 or submit a request online at OHPredictive.com.