September 8, 2021

To: Interested Parties

Fr: Kory Kozloski, Mandela Barnes for Wisconsin Campaign Manager

Re: Poll Results in the Wisconsin Senate Primary

Less than a year out from Election Day, Mandela Barnes has cemented himself as the clear frontrunner in the Democratic primary with a 29-point lead over the field. He leads in every media market in the state and holds leads among demographics ranging from seniors to Independents to men and women.

  • Barnes is by far the most popular candidate in the field. He has strong favorability ratings (64% favorable / 4% unfavorable, a 16:1 fav / unfav), including more than two-thirds name ID in every media market. Sarah Godlewski (22% favorable / 6% unfavorable, a 4:1 fav / unfav) and Alex Lasry (16% favorable /  6% unfavorable, a 3:1 fav / unfav) are far less known. 
  • Barnes holds a wide lead over the Democratic primary field. Barnes wins 37% of Democratic primary voters followed by Nelson at 8%, Godlewski at 7%, and Lasry at 5% (Nelson, Godlewski, and Lasry are all within the margin of error of one another). The other three candidates each earn 1% with 38% of voters still undecided. 
The following findings are based on the results of a survey conducted by Clarity Campaign Labs from August 28-30, 2021  in Wisconsin among N=698 likely 2022 Democratic primary election voters. Calls were conducted using a mix of  automated calls to landlines and live calls to cellphones. The results are subject to a margin of error of + 3.7%. 
  • Barnes’ lead is not just a result of his higher overall name ID. Among those with a favorable view of Sarah Godlewski, Barnes leads by 17 (44% to 27%), and  among the few who say they have a favorable view of Alex Lasry, Barnes leads by 14 (38% to 24%). This shows that even when people know and like his primary opponents, they overwhelmingly prefer Barnes. 
  • To highlight just how comprehensive Barnes’ lead is:
    • He is winning every media market in the state, including in Godlewski’s hometown market of La Crosse-Eau Claire where Barnes leads by 14  points.
    • Barnes holds large leads among both men (+26) and women (+27).
    • Barnes wins Democrats and young people, and he also wins Independents (+7), voters over 50 (+25), non-college voters (+26), and  White voters (+28).
  • Barnes’ lead over the primary field is even larger than the lead that now Governor Evers held over the Democratic primary field for Governor in  2018. In that January 2018 poll, Evers led the field by 18 points, earning 29% of Democratic primary voters. Evers would go on to win 42% of the vote in a 10-way Democratic primary.