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Stitt leads Edmondson
Gubernatorial candidates Drew Edmondson, left, debated Kevin Stitt, right, Monday, Sept. 24, 2018. Libertarian Chris Powell was not invited to participate by NewsOK.com. (NonDoc)

A poll released today shows Kevin Stitt leading Drew Edmondson 46.9 percent to 43.4 percent in the race to become Oklahoma’s next governor. Chris Powell received 2 percent support, with 7.8 percent remaining undecided.

Conducted Sept. 25 and 26 with 1,058 respondents, the poll was commissioned by Right Strategy Group and shows a close race at the top of Oklahoma’s general election ballot.

“With the election being over a month out, I think this shows a stable baseline of where candidates will be standing when their campaigns hit the gas here pretty soon,” said Ryan Tupps, an RSG partner. “I think it is interesting how close the governor’s race is compared to the other statewide offices and what that could mean for down-ballot races.”

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Right Strategy Group is a political consulting firm based in Oklahoma City. Tupps and Jackson Lisle formed RSG in 2015.

Tupps said the firm is working for opponents of State Question 793. As a result, the question was not included in the poll. SQ 793 would change Oklahoma’s optometric laws by inserting rules and regulations into the State Constitution.

Of the four other state questions polled, all received more “yes” responses than “no” responses, but only SQ 794 — called Marsy’s Law — topped 50 percent.

RSG also represents Rep. Randy McDaniel (R-OKC) who is running for State Treasurer against independent Charles de Coune. As a result, that race was not polled in the survey released Thursday either, Tupps said.

The poll includes favorability ratings for President Donald Trump, Gov. Mary Fallin and the Republican-led Oklahoma Legislature.

Read the full poll’s results

Moody’s upgrades Oklahoma bonds

Also Thursday, Moody’s Investor Services upgraded Oklahoma’s bond rating outlook. The financial services company had downgraded the state’s bond rating to “negative” in November 2017 as lawmakers failed to strike a revenue agreement to stabilize state funding.

But now, six months after the Legislature passed a bipartisan agreement to raise more than $400 million in revenue, Moody’s has revised its bond rating outlook for Oklahoma to “stable.”

Gov. Mary Fallin praised the news in a press release.

“Moody’s upgrading Oklahoma’s bond rating outlook is terrific news for our state,” Fallin said. “This reflects our growing state economy, improved budgeting practices and below-average debt burden. Most importantly, lawmakers approved and I signed a revenue package this year that provides a long-term solution to multi-year budget deficits caused by an energy downturn, and helps reduce the reliance on one-time funds. Finding new revenue is very tough, made even more difficult because revenue-raising measures require three-fourths votes to pass. The budget approved this year helps set us on a path to long-term sustainability and stability by making more recurring revenue available. Our economic pro-business policies are diversifying our economy and bringing in a large amount of new jobs, as seen by our unemployment rate dropping to 3.7 percent.”