Monmouth University went into the field to survey the Hawkeye State vote and divided the large sampling universe into segments for purposes of testing each of the state’s four congressional districts. The survey (7/25-8/3; 1,665 IA registered voters; 400 via live interview and 1,265 online; congressional district sample sizes were not released) finds two Democrats and a pair of Republicans leading in the four districts.
In the 1st, and all of the succeeding reported numbers are under the high voter turnout model, freshman Rep. Abby Finkenauer (D-Dubuque) leads Cedar Rapids state Rep. Ashley Hinson (R), 52-41%. In the 2nd, and confirming an earlier Harper Polling survey that found the race tight, state Sen. Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-Ottumwa) holds a slight edge over former state Senator and 2018 Lt. Governor nominee Rita Hart (D), 48-44%. Third District freshman Rep. Cindy Axne (D-Des Moines) records a 50-42% advantage over former US Rep. David Young (R). In the western 4th CD, state Sen. Randy Feenstra (R-Hull), who defeated Rep. Steve King (R-Kiron) in the June GOP primary, is establishing a large lead over 2018 Democratic nominee J.D. Scholten, 55-34%.
After five consecutive Iowa statewide post-primary surveys found Democratic challenger Theresa Greenfield edging Sen. Joni Ernst (R) by 2-3 percentage points, the new Monmouth University poll (7/30-8/3; 401 IA likely voters) shows the incumbent holding the same small lead, 48-45%. The Iowa race is part of the four-state Republican majority firewall that includes Alabama, Maine, and Montana. All four races are must-win GOP contests if the party is to hold their tenuous Senate majority.
In a surprising result, the Congressional Leadership Fund has released a poll of Iowa’s open 2nd District that sees former state Senator and 2018 Lt. Governor nominee Rita Hart (D) tied with Republican state Senator Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-Ottumwa), who is in fourth congressional campaign. The Harper Polling survey (7/26-28; 406 IA-2 likely general election voters) finds the two candidates tied with 41% support apiece.
Rep. David Loebsack (D-Iowa City) is retiring after seven terms and he averaged 54.1% of the vote in his six re-election contests. President Trump, however, carried the 2nd District, 49-45%, in 2016. Though we see a close race brewing, Ms. Hart has a huge cash-on-hand financial lead, $1.385 million to $506,000.
Spry Strategies, as part of their national survey series, tested the Iowa Senate race as many other pollsters have done previously. According to the Spry data (7/11-16; 701 IA likely general election voters), Sen. Joni Ernst, in a must-win situation for Republicans, continues to slightly trail her Democratic opponent, Des Moines real estate executive Theresa Greenfield (D). The Spry data finds the Greenfield edge to be 45-43%, well within the polling margin of error that has been consistent with all Iowa post-primary surveys.
Before Spry, the Democratic polling firm Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research, during the June 23-28 period, found the pair separated by the same two-point spread, 49-47%, again in Ms. Greenfield’s favor.
In 2018, Democrat Cindy Axne unseated then-Rep. David Young (R) by a two-point margin, 49-47%. A new Tarrance Group survey (7/7-9; 400 IA-3 likely voters) sees an equally close race again developing this year. According to the Tarrance findings, Mr. Young posts a 44-43% slight edge over Rep. Axne, which is similar to their March survey that found the two candidates locked in a 48-48% tie.
The Civiqs survey research organization, polling for the Daily Kos Elections website (6/6-8; 865 IA registered voters), finds new Democratic nominee Theresa Greenfield jumping out to a 48-45% edge over Sen. Joni Ernst (R). These numbers are similar to the post-June 2nd primary poll from Public Policy Polling that found Greenfield up 45-43%. The Iowa race clearly begins in toss-up mode.
Public Policy Polling, surveying for EMILY’s List, an organization supporting new Iowa Democratic US Senate nominee Theresa Greenfield, released a post-primary flash poll that found Sen. Joni Ernst (R) trailing her new opponent by two percentage points. According to the PPP study (6/3-4; 963 IA registered voters), Ms. Greenfield edges Sen. Ernst, 45-43%.
Often, PPP asks push questions on their polls for interest groups, but not on this survey. Therefore, it appears that partisan questions designed to influence a respondent did not alter this ballot test. Ms. Greenfield won the Democratic nomination last Tuesday with 47% of the vote against two opponents. Continued polling results such as these will clearly move this race into the top tier of challenge campaigns.
A story in the June 6th Business Insider publication reports that mail voting was handled well in certain states for last Tuesday’s primary, and poorly in others. Getting good marks, according to the BI story, are Iowa, Michigan, and Montana. Doing poorly, where voters were not sent their ballots, receiving incorrect ballots for their districts, or facing crowded polling stations for those who chose to vote in person, were the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.
With voter turnout being way down in Pennsylvania, for example (34% under 2016 Democratic primary participation totals and 55% for Republicans), a great deal of the reasoning for such a steep fall off could be that thousands of voters simply weren’t well enough informed that the April 28th election had been moved to June 2nd. We will be hearing much more about the all-mail experience while undoubtedly seeing calls for increasing mail options for this year’s general election.
The big news here was the defeat of embattled Rep. Steve King (R-Kiron) in the 4th District Republican primary. Mr. King becomes the second incumbent to be denied re-nomination in this election cycle, joining Illinois Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-Western Springs) who lost his Democratic primary in March. Rep. King had become embroiled in controversy involving racial comments that led to his being stripped of his committee assignments. This opened the door for state Sen. Randy Feenstra (R-Hull/Sioux County) to win last night’s Republican primary with a 46-36% margin. Mr. Feenstra will now face 2018 Democratic nominee J.D. Scholten in the general election. The 4th is Iowa’s most Republican district, so Sen. Feenstra becomes the favorite to win in November.
Real Estate executive Theresa Greenfield won the Democratic US Senate primary but failed to reach the 50% mark against two opponents. She now opposes first-term Sen. Joni Ernst (R) in the general election that promises to become highly competitive.
The other three congressional districts will also be competitive in the Fall. In the 1st CD, freshman Rep. Abby Finkenauer (D-Dubuque) will face a challenge from Cedar Rapids area state Representative and former television news anchor Ashley Hinson (R). In the open 2nd District to replace retiring Rep. David Loebsack (D-Iowa City), ex-state Senator and former Lt. Governor nominee Rita Hart will be favored over frequent congressional candidate Marianette Miller-Meeks (R), who is now a state Senator. The 3rd District features the expected re-match between Rep. Cindy Axne (D-Des Moines) and former Rep. David Young (R). This, too, will be a highly competitive general election contest.
A total of 24 states will host nomination elections in June, ten of which are postponed from earlier dates. Tomorrow is the biggest day, with ten states holding elections. Eight will vote in their presidential primaries (Iowa and Idaho held their presidential nominating votes earlier in the year).
June 2nd hosts regular state primaries on their originally scheduled date in Iowa, Montana, New Mexico, and South Dakota. New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) has postponed the presidential and state primary to July 7th, thus opting out of its traditional early June nomination date because of Coronavirus precautions.
A presidential stand-alone event is occurring in Rhode Island tomorrow, necessary since their regular state primary is scheduled as one of the latest in the country on September 15th. Postponed state primaries from earlier in the year are happening in the District of Columbia, Idaho, Indiana, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.
The Rundown Blog
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