A polling memo obtained by YallPolitics shows the results of a hypothetical matchup between State Treasurer Tate Reeves and Senate Pro-Tem Billy Hewes. This will likely be one of the two races to watch on the Mississippi political scene in 2011. Not suprisingly, Reeves has a commanding lead as of the point where this polling was done (in February 2010).

The poll was done by OnMessage, Inc. and polled 500 likely Republicans adjusted for high-turnout counties and polled fav/unfav for Reeves and Hewes and a head-to-head. Not surprisingly, as a statewide elected official being compared to a state senator, Reeves had a commanding lead of 50-12. Margin of error is +/- 4.4%.

Tate Reeves Polling Memo

Eight months has passed since this poll was taken. With the exception of both candidates campaign bank account balance I doubt a lot has changed inasmuch as neither side has spent dollars on messaging, but there are a couple of takeways. First, I think it lays out the hill Hewes has to climb, which should come as no real suprise. Name ID is for sale at your local tv station (or favorite political website), but still it costs money. Political giving is not what it was even two or three years ago and with the economy, it is much harder to obtain right now. Assuming the poll methodology is correct, the unfavorables of both candidates is statistically close to zero. The bottom line is that these are two “good” guys running against each other, but over time Hewes will be faced with the challenge of (1) achieving name ID parity which is doable and (2) hanging some real negatives on Reeves if he’s to tip the scales.

This is one we will be watching, but it looks like an interesting baseline has been set.