Polling shows independent Alyse Galvin within four points of Rep. Don Young

U.S. Rep. Don Young reacts while independent candidate Alyse Galvin answers a question during the Anchorage Chamber of Commerce candidate forum on Sept. 17, 2018. (Photo by Matt Buxton/TMS)

Independent congressional candidate Alyse Galvin got some good news this week with new polling that shows her within striking distance of Alaska’s U.S. Rep. Don Young.

Numbers released as part of Ivan Moore/Alaska Survey Research’s tracker poll covering Oct. 1 through 6 show Galvin with 46 percent of the vote to Young’s 49.7 percent. That’s a dramatic shift for both candidates from the previous tracker, which covered Sept 21 to 25, which showed Young at 53.8 percent to Galvin’s 42.5 percent.

Both polls were conducted with 500 likely voters during the time periods, and Moore has committed to releasing additional tracker polls in the run-up to election day.

The poll didn’t show much change in the favorables for Galvin, but it did show a considerable increase in name recognition for the independent who is running on the Democratic Party’s ticket. Responses have gone from 53 percent “Who?” to 45 percent.

Meanwhile, Young’s favorables have tanked, dropping about five points from the last poll (44.7 to 39.6) while his negatives saw a slight uptick.

Here’s the full breakdown of both candidates’ favorables according to the tracker poll:

As we’ve written before, everyone likes to dismiss the polling done by Moore when they don’t like the numbers, pointing to all sorts of reasons why. Still, he’s the only firm out there doing regular, publicly available polling of Alaska’s races and, when combined with the regular updates of as a tracker poll, provide the best look into how voters are thinking in the run up to November.

For the record, FiveThirtyEight’s House forecast—which includes Moore’s recent tracker poll—now gives Galvin a 1 in 4 shot of winning and is trending in her favor.

Campaign finance:

Galvin has also had an impressive run when it comes to fundraising. According to publicly available information from the Federal Elections Commission, Galvin has raised more than $600,000 as of Aug. 1 while Young had raised $800,000.

Galvin has had much faster momentum in the fundraising department, having only entered the race earlier this year while Young had been gathering campaign contributions since last year. He’s also gone long stretches without contributions while Galvin has been netting at least some money nearly every single day.

In a news release last week, Galvin’s campaign said they have already broke the $1 million mark and sits north of $1.1 million, making her one of the best-funded challengers to Young in a decade. Official numbers for the congressional race will be available later this month.

A big emphasis of Galvin’s campaign has been the fact that she hasn’t relied on special interest money for her campaign, while Young has. Galvin jabbed the Republican on this issue during a recent debate, to which Young called her “nasty.”

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