In two polls conducted last week State Senator Joni Ernst (R-Red Oak) is leading Congressman Bruce Braley (D-IA) in Iowa’s U.S. Senate race.
Rasmussen polled 750 likely voters in Iowa on June 4-5 and found Ernst ahead of Braley by one point – 45% to 44% with 9% being undecided. This is within the +/- 4% margin of error.
The Loras College poll shows Ernst with a 6 point lead over Braley 48% to 41.7%. 10.3% say they are undecided. Six hundred Iowans were polled on June 4-5, and this poll also has a +/- 4% margin of error. This poll is weighted toward Republicans with 39.3% identifying themselves as Republicans, 36% as Democrats and only 24.7% as independent/no party. It is interesting to note that as of 6/2/14 according to the Iowa Secretary of State’s office there are almost 100,000 more independent/no party registered voters (705,198) than there are registered Republicans who finish second in total voter registrations with 605,453. Democrats have 601,878. These polls are likely weighted by turnout models and not voter registrations however.
This change does not surprise me. Ernst just convincingly won the nomination and now voters are certain of the general election match-up. What these polls do indicate however is a shrinking number of undecided voters which will make this race very, very tight. I suspect we’ll see polling seesaw between the two unless Braley continues to assist Ernst by making blunders. Right now Real Clear Politics calls this race a toss-up, and that is not likely to change.