WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) -- A poll by Clarus Research Group released late Wednesday afternoon shows City Council Chairman Vincent Gray with a comfortable lead over incumbent Mayor Adrian Fenty in the Democratic primary election that will be held next Tuesday.
The Clarus Poll shows Gray with an seven-point lead among likely Democratic voters with Gray ahead 45 to 38 percent.
The poll shows a racial divide among Democratic voters, with Gray leading Fenty 62 percent to 17 percent among African American voters and Fenty leading Gray 68 percent to 22 percent among White voters.
"I think what's fascinating about the poll, three things:
Number one: the incumbent mayor has consistently run behind this challenger.
"Number two: a deep racial divide in the electorate and
"Number three: the importance of election-day turnout, which will ultimately determine the winner," said Ron Faucheux of the Clarus Poll.
"We have consistently seen in the polling that many African-American voters who supported Adrian Fenty four years ago are no longer supporting him now for a variety of reasons, some of which are personal and some of which involve issues," Faucheux said.
The vigorous campaigns seem to have had an interested effect on voters in the closing days of the election.
"What it shows is that both candidates have become more likeable over the last three weeks, which is unusual going into the election day, but it does show that Vincent Gray has a much higher likeability factor by 11 points than Adrian Fenty does.
Although Gray has a substantial lead, Faucheux says the outcome isn't cast in stone.
"Turnout is critical in this election. The ability of each campaign to get it's supporters to the polls will ultimately determine the winner," Faucheux said.