Texas GOP Gov. Abbott keeps comfortable lead over O'Rourke, GOP rivals, head of primary next month

Republican governor is competing for his third term, with primary next month
Governor of Texas Greg Abbott is seen in attendance during the UFC 265 event at Toyota Center on August 07, 2021 in Houston, Texas.

Texas GOP Gov. Greg Abbott  is maintaining a comfortable lead over potential top-tier Democrat challenger Beto O'Rourke, according to a new poll out of the University of Texas at Austin. 

According to the survey, conducted by the university's Texas Politics Project, Abbott leads O'Rourke 47% to 37%, in large part on the strength of his favorability among independent voters, who are breaking his way 42%-21%.

Heading into the March primary, Abbott is preparing to face off against two intra-party challengers, state GOP Chairman and  former Rep. Allen West ( at 15%) and former state Sen. Don Huffines ( at 14%.)

The poll among registered voters was taken from Jan. 28 to Feb. 7, with a margin of error of 2.83%.

The numbers' also suggest Abbott is positioned to comfortably win the primary.

According to the survey, 60% of Republican primary voters say they''' vote to renominate Abbott for a third term as governor.

O'Rourke, a 2016 presidential candidate and former congressman, is currently on a statewide tour emphasizing the Texas power grid that notoriously failed last year, leaving hundreds of thousands of Texans without power following a brutal winter storm. Democrats are hoping his name recognition will help him get elected and attract campaign donations from across the country. 

Forty-five percent of Texans say they disapprove of the job Abbott has done with respect to the power grid. But the attention of the average Texan may be focused elsewhere.

About 50% of voters in Texas say that inflation is having a major impact on their household budgets and financial situations, and 88% of voters say they have clocked recent price increases from the grocery store to the gas pump.