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Presidential Poll
November 1, 2000
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Democrat Al Gore and Republican George Bush are now in a virtual dead heat in Minnesota. Statewide, 44% of likely voters support Gore, while 41% back Bush, a significant 8% are for Green Party candidate Ralph Nader, 1% favor Reform Party nominee Pat Buchanan, and 6% are still undecided. Gore held a 47%-40% lead over Bush in September.

Poll Date Gore Bush Buchanan Nader Undecided
October 2000 44% 41% 1% 8% 6%
September 2000 47% 40% 1% 4% 8%
August 2000 48% 40% 1% 3% 8%
July 2000 40% 43% 3% 5% 9%
February 2000 43% 40% 4% n/a 13%
July 1999 39% 44% n/a n/a 17%

The gender gap remains in Minnesota, with Gore holding a 49%-35% lead among women and Bush ahead 46%-39% with men.

Gore leads by 7 points in the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area (46%-39%), has a narrower 44%-41% advantage in the Southeast, and is ahead by a wider 49%-33% margin in the Northeast. Bush leads 47%-38% in Southwest Minnesota and 49%-37% in Northwest.

Gore's narrowing lead can be attributed to increased support for Nader, whose backing jumped 4 points over the past month. Nader is doing the most damage to Gore in the Duluth/Iron Range region, where he is getting 11% of the vote. While Gore still leads in that area, Nader' s strength is pulling Gore's margin down.

Bush's personal popularity has increased over the past month. Statewide, Bush's favorable name recognition (43%) is now almost on par with Gore's (44%). More interesting, is the fact that Gore's negatives have jumped 8 points and are now higher than Bush's (37%-33%).

Name Recognition

Al Gore Recognize Favorable Recognize Unfavorable Recognize Neutral Don't Recognize
July '99 37% 39% 24% --
July '00 34% 34% 32% --
August '00 46% 27% 27% --
September '00 43% 29% 28% --
October '00 44% 37% 19% --

Name Recognition

George W. Bush Recognize Favorable Recognize Unfavorable Recognize Neutral Don't Recognize
July 1999 46% 16% 38% --
July 2000 39% 26% 34% 1%
August 2000 37% 32% 30% 1%
September 2000 37% 30% 33% --
October 2000 43% 33% 24% -

Gore's visit to Minnesota may have shored up his support, and the state's voting history in presidential elections suggests it should lean towards the Democrat. However, the closeness of the race here so late in the campaign could be an indicator that Gore's campaign is having trouble. If Bush wins Minnesota, it may indicate a wide electoral college win for the GOP nominee.

Statewide Name Recognition

Candidate Recognize Favorable Recognize Unfavorable Recognize Neutral Don't Recognize
Al Gore 44% 37% 19% --
George W. Bush 43% 33% 24% --


QUESTION: If the 2000 presidential election were held today, would you vote for:

  • The Democratic ticket of Al Gore and Joe Lieberman?
  • The Republican ticket of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney?
  • The Reform Party ticket of Pat Buchanan and Ezola Foster?
  • The Green Party ticket of Ralph Nader and Winona LaDuke?

Region Gore Bush Buchanan Nader Undecided
Statewide 44% 41% 1% 8% 6%
Minneapolis/St. Paul 46% 39% 1% 7% 6%
Rochester/Southeast 44% 41% 1% 6% 8%
Southwest Minnesota 38% 47% 2% 8% 6%
Northwest Minnesota 37% 49% 1% 7% 6%
Duluth/Northeast 49% 33% 1% 11% 6%

Gender Gore Bush Buchanan Nader Undecided
Men 39% 46% 2% 9% 4%
Women 49% 35% 1% 6% 9%

QUESTION:   Have the presidential debates made you think:

Issue Response
More highly of George W. Bush 24%
More highly of Al Gore 16%
More highly of Bush and Gore 7%
Not made you think more highly of either Bush or Gore 40%
Don't Know/Refused/Did not watch 13%

QUESTION: Does the current state of the U.S. economy make you more likely to vote for Bush, more likely to vote for Gore, or does it have no real effect on your vote?

Candidate Response
More likely Gore 30%
More likely Bush 15%
No effect 53%
Not sure 2%

QUESTION: Does the current situation in the Middle East make you more likely to vote for Bush, more likely to vote for Gore, or does it have no real effect on your vote?

Candidate Response
More likely Gore 23%
More likely Bush 21%
No effect 54%
Not sure 2%


The Mason-Dixon Minnesota Poll was conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research, Inc. of Washington, D.C. from October 26 through October 27, 2000. A total of 625 registered Minnesota voters were interviewed statewide by telephone. All stated they were likely to vote in the November general election.

Those interviewed were selected by the random variation of the last four digits of telephone numbers.A cross-section of exchanges were utilized in order to ensure an accurate reflection of the state.  Quotas were assigned to reflect voter turn-out county.

The margin for error, according to standards customarily used by statisticians, is no more than plus or minus 4 percentage points. This means that there is a 95 percent probability that the "true" figure would fall within that range if the entire population were sampled.The margin for error is higher for any subgroup, such as a regional or gender grouping.

Sample Figures:
Men 310 (50%)
Women 315 (50%)

Region Interviews
Minneapolis/St. Paul 350 interviews
Rochester/Southeast 71 interviews
Southwest Minnesota 64 interviews
Northwest Minnesota 68 interviews
Duluth/Northeast 72 interviews

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Poll Copyright 2000, Mason-Dixon Political/Media Research, Inc. All Rights Reserved