The 2016 Iowa Caucus Top 5
From left: Mike Huckabee, Scott Walker, Jeb Bush, Rand Paul and Ben Carson
Photo credit: Gage Skidmore (CC-By-SA 2.0)

The 2016 Iowa Caucus Top 5 From left: Mike Huckabee, Scott Walker, Jeb Bush, Rand Paul and Ben Carson Photo credit: Gage Skidmore (CC-By-SA 2.0)
The 2016 Iowa Caucus Top 5
From left: Mike Huckabee, Scott Walker, Jeb Bush, Rand Paul and Ben Carson
Photo credit: Gage Skidmore (CC-By-SA 2.0)

The latest Iowa Poll by the Des Moines Register and Bloomberg Politics and a poll conducted by Loras College show that the race towards the 2016 Iowa Caucus on February 1, 2016 is going to be tight.

Which is not a surprise.  Both polls had to adjust with Mitt Romney’s annoucement that he was leaving the race.  Prior to the announcement Romney was in third place in the DMR poll and in first place (just leading by 1 point) in the Loras poll.  Pollsters with both polls asked likely Republican voters who their 2nd choice would be.  They then reallocated the 2nd choice of Romney voters to the remaining candidates.

Here are the results of the DMR/Bloomberg Politics poll:

  1. Scott Walker – 15%
  2. Rand Paul – 14%
  3. Mike Huckabee – 13%
  4. Ben Carson – 10%
  5. Jeb Bush – 9%
  6. Ted Cruz – 6%
  7. Chris Christie – 6%
  8. Rick Santorum – 5%
  9. Marco Rubio – 4%
  10. Rick Perry – 3%
  11. Bobby Jindal – 2%
  12. Carly Fiorina – 1%
  13. John Kasich – 1%
  14. Donald Trump – 1%
  15. Mike Pence – 0%

8% of the 402 polled indicated they were not committed or unsure.  This poll has a margin of error of +/- 4.9%.

The Loras College poll results look like this:

  1. Huckabee – 14.4%
  2. Bush – 13.1%
  3. Carson – 12.8%
  4. Walker – 9.9%
  5. Paul – 7.0%
  6. Cruz – 5.4%
  7. Christie – 5.4%
  8. Rubio – 4.2%
  9. Santorum – 3.8%
  10. Perry – 3.2%
  11. Jindal – 1.6%
  12. Fiorina – 1.3%
  13. Kasich – 1.3%
  14. Lindsey Graham – 0.6%

The Loras College poll was conducted among 316 likely Republican caucus goers and has a margin of error of +/- 5.5%.  14.7% were undecided.

The Des Moines Register poll did not include U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham, and the Loras College poll did not include Donald Trump or Indiana Governor Mike Pence.

With Romney’s absence, in the DMR poll it seems that Mike Huckabee benefited the most with a 3% gain, he was in 4% originally, but took Romney’s spot in 3rd.  In the Loras College poll Bush gained the most with 4 points and jumped from 4th place to 2nd when Romney voters were reallocated.

Something to note with both polls.

Some interesting items… both polls have the same men in the top five though they don’t have the order to same.  Only 6-7 points separates the leader from 5th place.

It’s quite clear with both polls that Walker’s Iowa Freedom Summit appearance helped boost him in the polls.

The Common Core State Standards will play a major roll.  Loras College noted in their poll:

The Common Core curriculum is very unpopular with likely Republican caucus participants, with over 89 percent opposing it as a federal program and over 60 percent opposing it as a state program. Seventy three percent consider it “very important” or “somewhat important” in their decision on a presidential candidate.

Bloomberg pointed out that Bush’s support for the Common Core and his immigration stance would be a larger problem for him than his family name.  30% of those polled said it was a deal killer, and 32% said it was something that they would consider when making a decision.

Also in the DMR Poll 60% of those polled said it was more important for a candidate to align with their values even if they are not electable.  It is encouraging to see that “electability” is secondary.

Combining first and second choice the polling looks like this:

In the DMR/Bloomberg Poll:

  1. Walker – 25%
  2. Paul – 23%
  3. Carson – 19%
  4. Huckabee – 17%
  5. Bush – 15%
  6. Cruz – 11%
  7. Rubio – 11%
  8. Santorum – 10%
  9. Perry – 8%
  10. Christie – 7%
  11. Jindal – 4%
  12. Fiorina – 2%
  13. Kasich – 2%
  14. Trump – 2%
  15. Pence – 0%

In the Loras College poll we 1st and 2nd choice combined we see:

  1. Huckabee – 21.6%
  2. Carson – 21.4%
  3. Bush – 20.5%
  4. Walker – 15.5%
  5. Paul – 13.9%
  6. Cruz – 11.9%
  7. Christie – 9.8%
  8. Rubio – 9.5%
  9. Perry – 5.9%
  10. Santorum – 5.7%
  11. Jindal – 3.5%
  12. Fiorina – 2.1%
  13. Kasich – 2.1%
  14. Graham – o.7%

Now the obvious caveat – we are still one year out from the Iowa Caucus so these polls don’t mean all that much.  What they do indicate is that there is not a clear front runner and title of “2016 Iowa Caucus winner” is very much up for grabs.

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  1. Why was Bush the only one asked about what were perceived as his negatives? Were they asked about those before or after they were polled on favorites? Sounds like Push polling to me.

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