Raleigh – National and state Republicans have sparked a “civil war” in North Carolina. Senator Thom Tillis is a weak incumbent whose lack of a spine, evidenced by his “flip flop for the ages,” has voters “smell[ing] a rat.” The party is “in chaos” following a corruption scandal and strategists are worried about “lackluster candidates” for the Governor’s race – all developments that threaten Senator Tillis and the entire ticket next November.
Now, prominent outside conservative groups are leaking polls designed to encourage more challengers. According to the poll, “Thom Tillis is a weak incumbent, North Carolina primary voters dislike Tillis’s opposition to President Trump, and if the Washington establishment and Mitch McConnell’s PAC support Tillis’s campaign, it will further erode his support.”
Here’s a look at the topline results Republicans believe show their own incumbent is too weak to win a primary or a general:
1. “Thom Tillis is a weak incumbent” whose lack of support is “exceedingly rare” and “problematic in a general election” and “terrible in a primary.”
These results confirm previous polling which outlined how Sen. Tillis has lost “credibility with North Carolina Republicans” and saw his approval rating among Republican voters drop 12 points since January, leaving him with “the second-lowest base support among GOP Senators up in 2020.”
2. “North Carolina primary voters dislike Tillis’s opposition to President Trump”
Only 17% of GOP voters would vote to reelect Tillis in a primary, and more respondents would vote for a new candidate regardless of who the candidate is.
3. “If the Washington establishment and Mitch McConnell’s PAC support Tillis’s campaign, it will further erode his support.”
Washington Republicans and McConnell’s Super PAC are already propping up Tillis, sending Vice President Pence down to “rescue” him and threatening to “carpet bomb” Tillis primary challenger Garland Tucker – moves the poll found will backfire.