(CNN) – Texas Gov. Rick Perry, once thought to be the clear favorite to win his reelection bid this November, finds himself only 6 points ahead of Democrat Bill White, according to a new survey.
A University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll out Monday indicates Perry leading former Houston Mayor Bill White by a 39-33 percent margin among registered voters, a spread that has shrunk from the more-than 10-point lead Perry enjoyed during most of last spring and summer. And, given the poll's 3.5 percent sampling error, the race may essentially be a dead heat two months shy of Election Day.
Twenty-two percent of those questioned say they are undecided.
"White has not yet faded and remains in striking distance of Perry," sas Daron Shaw, a co-director the poll. "The downside for White is that Perry is up by 18 points among those who say they are extremely likely to vote. White needs a big turnout among young voters and minorities to be competitive."
In what may be good news for White however, a large number of undecided voters are independent or tilt moderate.
"There are a lot of people out there who are not ready to respond to a poll about who they're going to vote for," said the Tribune's Jim Henson. "If you look at the breakdown, there are a lot of moderates and a lot of independents."
Perry is bidding for a third full term as Texas governor.
The poll surveyed 800 registered voters by telephone and was taken September 3-8. It has a sampling error of plus or minus 3.5 percent.