Analysis

Key points in our tracking poll

A political rally in southern California during the 2016 presidential election. (Photo: Joseph Sohm, via Shutterstock)

The latest Capitol Weekly tracking poll has been released and here are a few key takeaways.

1. The top tier continues to be a stable force in the survey, which had 581 respondents. With these current results it is likely that four candidates would dominate in the delegate allocations at the congressional level, in which 272 are allocated, and three would be splitting up the 90 statewide delegates, with Pete Buttigieg extremely close to the required 15% threshold.

2.  The entrance of Bloomberg at just 5% might not seem noteworthy, but that figure significantly overshadows other more recent entrants such as California’s Tom Steyer at 1% or Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick at 0%.  Blomberg also surpassed several candidates who have been in the contest all year and have made several return visits to the debate stage.

3. The Pete Buttigieg bump from November has stabilized, even though it appears that the entry of Michael Bloomberg is competing for some of the same voters, particularly those who are initially considering Biden.

 

 

 

Initial Presidential Vote

Respondents

Share

Change from Nov.

Elizabeth Warren

134

23%

-4%

Bernie Sanders

111

19%

-2%

Joe Biden

110

19%

+1%

Peter Buttigieg

79

14%

Andrew Yang

28

5%

+1%

Michael Bloomberg

28

5%

+5%

Amy Klobuchar

25

4%

+1%

Tulsi Gabbard

23

4%

+1%

Cory Booker

11

2%

+1%

Julian Castro

11

2%

+1%

Tom Steyer

9

1%

Marianne Williamson

7

1%

+1%

John Delaney

1

0%

The portion of the survey that has been interesting in terms of predicting future mobility has been the question,“Which candidate are you most interested in learning more about?” This shows that plenty of voters are looking around about some of the candidates who have been drawing more attention nationally. 

We have seen a slight bump for Amy Klobuchar in Iowa, a considerable amount of publicity for Julian Castro surrounding his continued fight to get on the debate stage, a lot of attention directed at Andrew Yang and, obviously, voters are giving a real look at Michael Bloomberg.

Learning More About

Respondents

Share

Change from Nov.

Elizabeth Warren

          79

14%

-9%

Peter Buttigieg

          72

12%

-6%

Michael Bloomberg

          65

11%

+11%

Andrew Yang

          57

10%

+5%

Julian Castro

          53

9%

+9%

Amy Klobuchar

          44

8%

+4%

Full crosstabs can be seen here for the final survey and here for the survey before the reallocation of Kamala Harris votes.

One other aspect of the polling which should be a concern for several of the Democratic candidates is the overwhelming number of non-partisan voters — 82%, in fact —  who don’t know how to obtain a Democratic ballot.  A whopping 38% of these voters believe the presidential candidates will be on their ballot without them having to do anything – just like Democrats and Republicans are on their ballot in the primary election for statewide office, Congress and the Legislature.

Each candidate has a segment of the nonpartisans that favors them – similar to how their bases of support can be defined by age, ethnicity, and region of the state. 

However, for a few candidates, the non-partisan voters actually favor them significantly more than registered Democrats.  The most notable candidates with lopsided support from nonpartisans are Yang and Bloomberg, each of whom have more than three-times the level of support from these non-Democrats that can participate in the Democratic primary.

First Choice by Partisanship

Democrats

Independents

Elizabeth Warren

26%

13%

Bernie Sanders

20%

14%

Joe Biden

19%

19%

Peter Buttigieg

15%

11%

Andrew Yang

3%

11%

Michael Bloomberg

3%

10%

Amy Klobuchar

4%

4%

Tulsi Gabbard

2%

11%

Cory Booker

2%

0%

Julian Castro

1%

3%

Tom Steyer

1%

2%

Marianne Williamson

1%

2%

John Delaney

0%

1%

There have been two other reputable polls released this month. 

A telephone-based survey of 508 likely voters from CNN showed Biden in the lead, followed by Sanders and Warren, and the UC Berkeley/LA Times survey of 1,604 likely voters, conducted via email and online using a methodology similar to the Capitol Weekly survey, showed Sanders in the lead, followed by Warren and Biden. Both other polls had Pete Buttigieg in fourth, followed by Yang and Bloomberg, with all the other candidates at 2% or less.

In one sense, it appears like there is no real front runner given the three different results. However, the CNN polling has the top three within the margin of error of each other, and the Berkeley polling, which included Kamala Harris at 7%, likely undervalued the other candidates as a result, particularly Warren.

 


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