A new Harper Polling/Conservative intel survey shows Democrat Bruce Braley narrowly leading five Republicans running for the U.S. Senate, even though a generic Republican slightly leads a generic Democrat among the sample.
Harper Polling surveyed 985 likely Iowa voters (whatever that means a year before the election) on November 23 and 24. The sample should have produced great results for GOP candidates; about 39 percent described themselves as conservatives, 37 percent moderates, and just under 18 percent liberals. Only 39 percent of respondents described themselves as “Obamacare supporters” while more than 52 percent were “Obamacare opponents.” Nearly 38 percent of the sample said they were Republicans, less than 35 percent Democrats, and less than 28 percent no-party voters. That’s not far off the statewide turnout for the 2010 midterm election. Iowa Democrats hope to improve on that dismal turnout next year.
Despite a respondent pool that would seem to favor the GOP, a generic Republican Senate candidate leads a generic Democrat by only 42 percent to 38 percent in the new Harper Polling survey. Braley had small leads (between 3 percent and 6 percent) in named match-ups against Sam Clovis, Joni Ernst, Mark Jacobs, Matt Whitaker, and David Young. I wouldn’t read too much into those head to head numbers, because Braley had far higher name recognition than any of the Republicans, as we’ve seen in several other IA-Sen polls. Still, Braley has to be encouraged to be leading GOP candidates in a survey with a conservative-leaning sample.
Any comments about the Senate race are welcome in this thread.