langeINDEPENDENCE, IA — A new poll in Iowa’s 1st congressional district shows Republican challenger Ben Lange surging past Democrat incumbent Bruce Braley 46.9% to 45.4% heading into the final days of the campaign.

Mitt Romney has also pulled ahead of Barack Obama 48.9% to 46.4%, according to the poll, signaling a potential breach of the Obama campaign’s anticipated firewall in Eastern Iowa.

The poll, conducted by Iowa-based Victory Enterprises, surveyed 390 likely voters on Wednesday, October 24th. The poll was conducted using automated telephone interviews and has a margin of error of 5.1%.

Lange told the Des Moines Register at Romney’s stop in Cedar Rapids earlier this week that Romney’s performance in the October 3rd presidential debate has had a significant impact on down ballot races like his, energizing Republicans across Eastern Iowa.

“We can just see in the sheer number of volunteers that have showed up from three weeks ago, after that first debate until this point in time,” he said, adding, “We are thriving at this right now.”

The new polling provides the first empirical evidence of a Republican surge in Eastern Iowa that could shake-up races from the top-of-the-ticket to the bottom.

“We are surging at the right time and we’re prepared to finish the job,” said Lange campaign manager Jason Flohrs.

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