Change Research, Emerson College, and the Public Policy Institute of California tested three major states for the Democratic presidential primaries and found razor thin margins in two. The exception, Arizona (Change Research; 9/27-28; 396 AZ likely Democratic primary voters), finds Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) topping the field with 35% support, followed by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) with 19%, former Vice President Joe Biden’s 15%, and Mayor Pete Buttigieg recording a 13% preference figure. According to these numbers, Arizona is one of Mr. Biden’s weakest states while Mr. Buttigieg returns to double digits.
The two others are virtual three-way ties. The Public Policy Institute of California (9/16-25; 692 CA likely Democratic primary voters) sees Sen. Warren barely in first place with 23% of the responding sample, compared to Mr. Biden’s 22%, and Sen. Sanders’ 21%. The result portends another disappointing performance for Sen. Kamala Harris in her own state as she records only 8% support.
Little polling has been done in Ohio, but Emerson College reversed the trend and just completed a test of the Buckeye State Democratic electorate (9/29-10/2; 353 OH likely Democratic primary voters). They also find a close contest with Mr. Biden claiming first place with 29%, and Sens. Sanders and Warren nipping at his heels with 27 and 21% preference factors.
Former Congressman Darrell Issa (R), who represented California’s 49th District for nine terms before retiring prior to the beginning of the current Congress, formally announced yesterday that he will enter the crowded 50th District primary contest against indicted Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine). Appearing with him at the announcement event were two other GOP candidates, former Escondido Mayor Sam Abed and current El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells, who both said they will not file for the office and instead endorsed Mr. Issa.
Remaining in the race are seven other challenger candidates, four Republicans, two Independents, and 2018 Democratic candidate Ammar Campa-Najjar who lost to Rep. Hunter, 52-48%. All contenders will appear on the March 3, 2020 primary ballot, with the top two advancing into the November general election irrespective of party affiliation.
A total of 219 House Democrats and one Independent have signed the petition pledge indicating they will vote for at least some version of an impeachment resolution. Doing so would impeach, or indict, the President, and send the charge to the Senate for a potential trial and motion to remove from office. Among the signers are several members who have competitive re-elections, are in Trump districts, or have primary competition. The lone Independent, Rep. Justin Amash (I-MI), will likely face attacks from both sides as he presumably seeks re-election as an Independent or minor party nominee.
The Democrats supporting impeachment who already face credible general election opposition are (listed alphabetically by name) Reps: Cindy Axne (IA), Gil Cisneros (CA), Sharice Davids (KS), Antonio Delgado (NY), Abby Finkenauer (IA), Lizzie Fletcher (TX), Andy Kim (NJ), Susie Lee (NV), Elaine Luria (VA), Tom Malinowski (NJ), Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (FL), Chris Pappas (NH), Katie Porter (CA), Harley Rouda (CA), Elissa Slotkin (MI), Abigail Spanberger (VA), and Lauren Underwood (IL).
Former 49th District Congressman Darrell Issa (R), who served in the House for nine terms, is expected to announce his candidacy for the neighboring 50th District today. But, instead of seeing the field against indicted Republican Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) grow, it apparently will actually contract. Two of the current candidates, ex-Escondido Mayor Sam Abed and El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells are slated to appear with Mr. Issa. It is presumed that they will both drop out of the race and endorse the former Congressman.
California candidate filing is December 6th, and the Golden State jungle primary is scheduled concurrently with their presidential primary on March 3rd. Regardless of percentage attained and party affiliation, the top two finishers will advance to the November general election. Mr. Hunter is scheduled for trial in February and he has not yet indicated whether he will run for re-election.
Last week Temecula City Councilman Matt Rahn (R) decided not to pursue his candidacy against indicted Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) because of too much political uncertainty. Now, state Sen. Brian Jones (R-Santee) announced that he, too, will join the crowded race, and he promises to be a serious competitor since his state Senate district, which is larger than the congressional seat, encompasses 81% of the CD’s constituency.
Also contemplating entering the race is former 49th District Congressman Darrell Issa. In the contest are ex-San Diego City Councilman and congressional candidate Carl DeMaio, former Escondido Mayor Sam Abed (R), El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells (R), and retired Navy SEAL Larry Wilske (R). The lone Democratic candidate is 2018 nominee Ammar Campa-Najjar who recorded a 48.3% performance against Mr. Hunter last November.
The new Change Research survey conducted for San Francisco radio station KQED (9/12-15; 3,325 CA likely Democratic primary voters; online) sees a very close presidential nomination race developing for the large 416-delegate prize, with home state Sen. Kamala Harris left out of the upper echelon.
The Change data finds Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) in a virtual tie (Warren 25; Sanders 23), and former Vice President Joe Biden trailing with 18% support. Sen. Harris records an 11% preference score, an improvement from the recent Emerson College poll that found her dropping all the way to 5% but still far behind, while South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg registers 10 percent.
If this poll were the basis for delegate apportionment, Sen. Warren would gain approximately 158 delegates and Sen. Sanders would claim 145 first ballot votes, while Mr. Biden would get 113.
Former California Congressman Darrell Issa (R) reportedly has received word that the Senate will move forward on his nomination as director of the US Trade and Development Agency soon, but the retired nine-term House member says he will continue preparing to run for the 50th Congressional District unless he is confirmed by November 3rd. Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) is under indictment and faces a trial after the first of the year. Four other Republicans have already announced their intention to run. One Democrat, 2018 nominee Ammar Campa-Najjar, has also declared his 2020 candidacy.
A fifth Republican, Temecula City Councilman and former Mayor Matt Rahn, has decided against running. He originally filed a campaign committee with the Federal Election Commission but says the uncertainty of the situation surrounding Mr. Hunter leads him to discontinue his campaign. The California candidate filing deadline is December 6th, with the jungle primary election scheduled for March 3rd.
As predicted a couple of weeks ago, four-term Rep. Paul Cook (R-Yucca Valley) announced that he will not seek another term in the US House but will instead file for an open seat on the San Bernardino Board of Supervisors. Mr. Cook, who will be 77 years of age at the next election, will be able to continue in public service should he be elected but won’t have to travel cross country almost every week.
Immediately, state Assemblyman Jay Obernolte (R-Hesperia) announced that he would run for Congress, and just as quickly Rep. Cook endorsed him. The 8th District is one of the few safe Republican seats in California. It stretches from the San Bernardino suburbs all the way to the Nevada border, then north almost to the outer reaches of Lake Tahoe. In the last election, Mr. Cook and another Republican, former Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, advanced into the general election from the jungle primary.
Emerson College conducted a poll in Sen. Kamala Harris’ home state (9/13-16; 474 CA likely Democratic primary voters) and finds that the Senator has even dropped behind New York City businessman Andrew Yang on her own political turf. Emerson projects a close and crowded top tier, with former Vice President Joe Biden and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) tied at 26% apiece. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is close behind with 20% support. Mr. Yang and Sen. Harris post 7 and 6%, respectively.
This poll confirms that the Democratic race has evolved into a three-way race among Biden, Sanders, and Warren, even in California. Such a tight configuration, if it were to hold, would also suggest a virtually even split among the state’s 416 first ballot delegates, the largest contingent heading to the Democratic National Convention next July in Milwaukee.
San Diego City Council President Georgette Gomez has officially declared her congressional candidacy for the newly open 53rd District, hoping to succeed retiring US Rep. Susan Davis (D-San Diego). Already in the race is former congressional candidate and ex-State Department official Sara Jacobs. Ms. Jacobs, who is independently wealthy, spent $2.15 million in her 2018 campaign for the open 49th District. She placed third in the jungle primary that launched current Rep. Mike Levin (D-San Juan Capistrano) into the seat.
Ms. Jacobs announced last week that she would run for the open 53rd. The district is heavily Democratic, so the chances of two party members advancing into the general election from the 2020 March jungle primary are relatively good. It is likely we will see several more individuals soon come forward to declare their own candidacies.
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