OC District Attorney Todd Spitzer could win re-election outright in the June primary, according to a new poll from Probolsky Research.
35% of surveyed voters said they would cast their ballots for Spitzer if the election were held today, while his principal rival, progressive Democrat Pete Hardin is a distant second with 12%. A huge 42% of voters are undecided. Bryan Chehock and Michael Jacobs follow at 7% and 4%, respectively.
“With a 3-to-1 lead and a big undecided vote, Spitzer could pull it off in June if he can attract just about 15% of undecided voters,” said Adam Probolsky, president of Probolsky Research. “It seems like the voters are opting for the strong prosecutor they know despite all his controversies.”
For months, Spitzer has been buffeted by negative internal leaks and allegations of “racism” from opponents and both internal and external law enforcement sources. Spitzer vigorously denies these allegations, dismissing them as politically motivated while pressing ahead with a law-and-order campaign on the slogan “NoLAinOC.”
The survey sampled a universe of 300 votes, and has a 5.8% margin of error.
According to the survey, Spitzer’s strongest voter demographics are men, Hispanics, Republicans and voters age 50-64.
“In this moment of time of smash and grabs and gun violence by convicted criminals released early from jail and prison, voters are anxious about what comes next,” observed Probolsky. “Spitzer has positioned himself to be the answer to that question, promoting himself as a traditional tough-on-crime prosecutor.”
“That would have been risky just a couple years ago when a more liberal approach in our penal system had some momentum, but it seems like good politics today,” said Probolsky.