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UTAH POLL OF RECORD: The C’s Have It – Curtis and Cox Clear Frontrunners in Utah GOP Senate Primary

Incumbent Gov. Cox and Rep. John Curtis Seeking to Replace Mitt Romney Hold Double-Digit Leads


PHOENIX (June 24, 2024)- In ruby-red Utah, the winner of a Republican primary is usually tantamount to winning a general election. A Democrat has not represented Utahns in the US Senate since 1977, won a gubernatorial election since 1980, or won any statewide race since the turn of the millennium. With this in mind, Noble Predictive Insights(NPI) poll of record on Utah’s GOP Primaries should be encouraging signs for Spencer Cox and John Curtis.

 

This Utah Public Opinion Pulse (UTPOP) poll of record, conducted from June 20–21, 2024, surveyed 432 likely Republican primary voters in Utah, yielding a margin of error of ±4.71%. 

 

Senate

Congressman John Curtis – whose district spans from eastern Salt Lake and Utah counties to Utah’s eastern and southern borders – leads Trump-endorsed Riverton Mayor Trent Staggs by 20 points in the race to succeed retiring Sen. Mitt Romney. Curtis earns the support of 48% of the likely primary electorate to Staggs’ 28%. No other declared candidate’s support breaches double digits.



June 2024 UT PoR Senate

Staggs’ Trump endorsement and Republican convention victory seem to be overcast by Curtis’ appeal and campaign resources. Curtis enjoys a net favorability rating of +32 while Staggs just about breaks even with likely GOP primary voters (net favorability +1). And, Curtis outraised Staggs 2.5 times over the last two months.


“In most Republican primaries, Trump’s endorsement essentially guarantees victory,” said NPI Chief of Research David Byler. “But in Utah – a uniquely conservative, yet Trump-skeptical state – the situation is different. Trump’s endorsement helps, but it’s not a golden ticket. A good candidate with the right positioning – like Curtis – can build a lead without Trump’s stamp of approval.”

 

Governor

Despite winning the Republican convention and the GOP primary in 2020, incumbent Governor Spencer Cox is facing some opposition from within his party. State Rep. Phil Lyman won the party’s nominating convention this April, and Cox leads him by just a 55% to 42% margin.


June 2024 UT PoR Gov

Cox and Lyman both enjoy net-positive favorability ratings, with Cox (net +17) being slightly more popular than Lyman (net +13).


Although both John Curtis and Spencer Cox enjoy double-digit leads over their nearest competitors, fissures are opening up among gender, regional, and ideological lines. Among men, Curtis leads Trent Staggs by 14 points (44% to 30%). With women, Curtis leads by nearly 30 (52% to 26%). The same trend rings true in the gubernatorial match-up with Cox leading Phil Lyman by 3 points among men (51% to 48%) and 24 points among women (60% to 36%). Regionally, Utah’s more southern counties favor underdogs Staggs and Lyman by 2 points and 33 points, respectively.


“The southern, rural stretches of Utah were a problem for Cox in the 2020 gubernatorial primary, so it’s no surprise that both Cox and Curtis post some of their worst numbers there,” said Byler. “But both Curtis and Cox posted better numbers in the other regions of the state and have a real lead.”

 

The sharpest dividing line among Utah Republicans is support for President Trump – who has endorsed Trent Staggs but has not (as of the writing of this release) made an endorsement in the race for Governor. Utah Republicans who support Donald Trump more than they support the Republican Party have largely followed the President’s endorsement – Staggs earns 55% of the support from this group compared to John Curtis’ 22%. On the other hand, among those who put the GOP ahead of the former president, Curtis leads with 60% to Staggs’ 18%.


June 2024 UT PoR Senate by GOP faction

 

In the Governor’s race, the schism is even deeper. Phil Lyman leads Spencer Cox by 61 points among Trump-first Republicans (80% to 19%), while Cox leads Lyman by 42 points among party loyalists (70% to 28%).


June 2024 UT PoR Gov by GOP faction

“In Utah, it's becoming increasingly tough to oppose Trump. Look at Mitt Romney's favorability ratings (net -10) and his decision to retire,” said Byler. “But, if you can meld the anti-Trump faction in with some pro-Trump voters – and lean on GOP women – you can create a solid coalition. A lot can happen in the run-up to a primary – anything from a surge for the Trump-ian candidates to a bigger-than-expected landslide for the leaders is still on the table. But, heading into this final stretch, it’s clear that both Cox and Curtis are in the lead.”


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Methodology: This poll was conducted via SMS text. The survey was completed by Noble Predictive Insights from June 20-21, 2024, from a Utah statewide Republican likely voter sample (frequent primary voters and Republicans registered after the 2022 primary). The sample size was 432 likely Republican primary voters, yielding a MoE of ±4.71%. The sample was weighted by age, gender, ethnicity, and county to reflect the projected Utah Republican primary electorate. Numbers may not equal 100% due to rounding. Non-response, coverage error, and other factors may also contribute to error.


Media Contact:

Veronica Sutliff, Noble Predictive Insights, v.sutliff@npredictive.com, (602) 390-5248

Sydney Evenson, Noble Predictive Insights, s.evenson@npredictive.com, (602) 350-1065


About Noble Predictive Insights: As a nonpartisan public opinion polling, market research, and data analytics firm, Noble Predictive Insights exists to transform how leaders make decisions by delivering data-based solutions and predictive insights that provide a clear path forward. We bridge the gap between research and strategy with customized strategic research, a hyper-focus on impact, and being true partners with our clients. Noble Predictive Insights (formerly O.H. Predictive Insights) is a 2023 Inc. 5000 fastest-growing company in the Southwest region, and is ranked in the top 15 most accurate pollsters as well as in the top 5 for lowest average bias in the 2021-22 election cycle by FiveThirtyEight. For more information, please call (602) 641-6565 or visit our website at www.noblepredictiveinsights.com.


About the UTPOP: The Utah Public Opinion Pulse (UTPOP) serves statewide polls to 800 Utah registered voters, with opportunities to include a sub-sample of likely voters in the state. The UTPOP paints a high-definition picture of the perceptions, opinions, and future decisions of voters to provide meaningful and actionable insights on public affairs and voter sentiment.

Organizations and individuals can purchase customized questions to add to the end of any UTPOP poll, exclusive to them and not shared publicly (unless otherwise requested), getting the same critical, targeted information at a fraction of the cost of a comprehensive survey. Learn more about adding custom questions to the UTPOP here.

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