Tags: | joni earnst | leads | bruce | braley

Rasmussen: Ernst leads Braley

Monday, 13 Oct 2014 02:01 PM

Iowa’s closely watched U.S. Senate race remains a toss-up, but Republican Joni Ernst has edged slightly ahead of Democrat Bruce Braley with three weeks left until Election Day.

The latest Rasmussen Reports statewide telephone survey of Likely Iowa Voters finds Ernst picking up 48 percent of the vote to Braley’s 45 percent. One percent (1 percent) like another candidate, and five percent (5 percent) are undecided.

This is the first survey of the race to include "leaners," or those who initially are undecided or prefer a third party candidate and are asked again to pick between the Republican and the Democrat. Among the 77 percent of Iowa voters who are certain of whom they will vote for, Ernst leads 52 percent to 48 percent. The Democrat has a 38 percent to 35 percent edge among the 23 percent who say they could still change their minds.

The survey was conducted prior to the candidate’s second debate on Saturday.
The candidates were tied at 43 percent apiece in surveys in September and August. It was Ernst 45 percent, Braley 44 percent in June after she won the GOP primary. Ernst trailed 40 percent to 37 percent in our first look at the race in March.

Iowa continues to be a toss-up in the Rasmussen Reports 2014 Senate Balance of Power rankings. At stake is the seat held by retiring Democratic Senator Tom Harkin, and Republicans view a win in the state as critical to their hopes of taking control of the Senate.

Ernst, a state senator, has the backing of 91 percent of Republicans. Braley, a Democratic congressman, is supported by 88 percent of Iowa Democrats. The candidates are tied at 43 percent each among voters not affiliated with either political party.

The survey of 957 Likely Voters in Iowa was conducted on October 8-10, 2014 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95 percent level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC.

Thirty-six U.S. Senate seats are on the ballot this November. Twenty-one of them are held by Democrats and 15 by Republicans. Democrats have a 53-to-45 majority over Republicans in the Senate. In addition, there are two independent senators who caucus with the Democrats. The GOP needs a net gain of six seats to be the majority party in the Senate.

Fifty percent (50 percent) of Iowa voters have a favorable opinion of Ernst, while 45 percent view her unfavorably. This includes 33 percent with a Very Favorable view and 32 percent with a Very Unfavorable one. For Braley, favorables are 47 percent and unfavorables 48 percent, with Very Favorables of 24 percent and Very Unfavorables of 30 percent. Strong positive and negative opinions have gone up for both candidates since last month.

Immigration reform was a topic discussed during this weekend’s debate, and only 25 percent of Iowa voters favor the president granting amnesty to several million illegal immigrants without the approval of Congress. Sixty-four percent (64 percent) are opposed. These findings are comparable to those measured on the national level.

Ninety percent (90 percent) who favor President Obama granting amnesty to illegal immigrants support Braley, while 71 percent of those who are opposed back Ernst.
Just 41 percent of Iowa voters have a favorable opinion of the national health care law, while 55 percent view it unfavorably. This is a more positive view than voters have nationally and includes 18 percent with a Very Favorable opinion and 42 percent with a Very Unfavorable one, making the law even less liked in the state compared to last month.

Ninety-six percent (96 percent) who have a Very Favorable opinion of the law support Braley, who voted for the law as a member of the House. Eighty-eight percent (88 percent) of respondents with a Very Unfavorable opinion of the health care law favor Ernst.

Braley isn’t helped by President Obama’s continuing unpopularity in Iowa. Obama carried the state in both the 2008 and 2012 elections, but only 45 percent approve of his job performance now. Fifty-three percent (53 percent) disapprove. This includes 22 percent who Strongly Approve and 42 percent who Strongly Disapprove, giving the president a job approval rating in Iowa comparable to what he earns nationally.


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Iowa's closely watched U.S. Senate race remains a toss-up, but Republican Joni Ernst has edged slightly ahead of Democrat Bruce Braley with three weeks left until Election Day. The latest Rasmussen Reports statewide telephone survey of Likely Iowa Voters finds Ernst...
joni earnst, leads, bruce, braley
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2014-01-13
Monday, 13 Oct 2014 02:01 PM
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