As a follow-up to the last post, a commenter on the piece over at PunditHouse.com took issue with pointing out that there are 170k Republicans in Mecklenburg county and that they certainly all would not be voting in the 2014 US Senate primary. He also took issue with comparing Greg Brannon to Ted Cruz and what happened in the Texas primary in 2012.
Here is the response.
Certainly, not all of the 170k Meck Republicans will turn out in 2014. However, percentages are relative. For example, using the Republican 2012 presidential primary as a comparison Meck Republicans cast 7.75% of all the registered Republican votes cast in the that primary. If one includes all voters regardless of party registration who chose to vote in the Republican primary, Meck represented 8.05% of all the votes cast in the statewide Republican primary. It's reasonable to presume the overall percentage of Meck voters in the 2014 primary will be somewhat close to those numbers. These numbers came from the Civitas Vote Tracker website.
The point is that regardless of the total number of voters that turn out, Mecklenburg's percentage will likely be a big chunk of that and Speaker Tillis's position on toll roads will not sit well with a significant portion of that chunk. If one also considers that primaries have a larger percentage of partisan and activist turnout, that could also be bad for Speaker Tillis. From what I've seen, many of those types are the most upset with the toll road plan.
As for comparing Dr Brannon to Ted Cruz that's hard to say. I haven't followed either of them too closely. That comparison was more to the point that anything can happen if a race goes to a runoff. However, since the question was asked. That got me thinking.
I looked for polling numbers from this point in the 2012 Texas primary race and what I found was interesting. This poll from Public Policy Polling on the 2012 Texas primary done in early 2011 had David Dewhurst at 23% with Ted Cruz at only 3%. Ron Paul had 21% at that time. While it might be correct in saying Brannon is not Ted Cruz, it would also be accurate to say Thom Tillis is not David Dewhurst. In this recent poll (also done by PPP) on the upcoming NC Senate contest (done roughly at the same early point in the election cycle) Greg Brannon is at 7% and Thom Tillis is at 6%. Yes, Texas is more conservative than North Carolina, but that's more of an issue for the general election. In the primary, the dynamics certainly could be similar.