Month: April 2019

Austin-American Statesman: Presidential poll suggests 2020 Texas battleground

Democratic presidential candidates Beto O’Rourke, Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are in a statistical dead heat with President Donald Trump in Texas, according to an Emerson College poll released Monday.

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2020 Texas: Biden and Beto in Dead Heat in Democratic Primary

A new Emerson Poll of Democratic Primary voters in Texas finds former Vice President Joe Biden at 23% and former Texas U.S. Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke at 22%. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders was the only other candidate to clear double digits, polling third at 17%. Mayor Pete Buttigieg at 8% and Senator Elizabeth Warren at 7% are  ahead of former HUD secretary and native Texan Julian Castro, who is at 4%. The poll was conducted April 25-28, 2019, mixed mode, of Democratic primary voters with n=342, +/- 5.3%.

Spencer Kimball, Director of the Emerson Poll, explains “it seems that Beto O’Rourke does not have Texas locked up. Bernie Sanders had trouble back in 2016 in southern states, including losing Texas by 32 points (65% to 33%) to Hillary Clinton, so it will be exciting to see who can capture the Lone Star state in next March’s key Super Tuesday contest.”

Continuing the trend found in other Emerson polls this year, voters aged 18-29 continue to break more for Sanders than any other candidate, with 34% of their vote. O’Rourke leads among those age 30-49 with 31%, and Biden leads among 50-64 year olds with 29%, and among 65+ year olds with 36%.

O’Rourke does best with Hispanic voters, receiving 32% of their support. O’Rourke and Biden lead among white voters with 22% support each. Biden also leads among black voters with 40% support.

President Trump has a 46% approval/44% disapproval in Texas. However, he remains popular within his party, leading Republican opponent former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld 87% to 13%. (n=344, +/-5.3%). This is consistent with other Emerson polls conducted in different states over the past several months.


Head to Heads:

In general election matchups, Trump is in statistical dead heats with four of the top six Democratic opponents, and leads the other two. In a Donald Trump versus Joe Biden matchup, the two are almost exactly even at 50% for Biden and 49% for Trump. Beto O’Rourke versus Trump is very similar, with 50% going to Beto and 50% supporting Trump. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are the other Democrats within the margin, with Trump receiving 51% to Sanders’ 49% and Trump leading Warren 53% to 47%. The rest fall outside of the margin, with Kamala Harris and Pete Buttigieg each receiving 46% support to Trump’s 54%.


Despite the state’s current strict marijuana policies, a plurality (38%) of Texans support full legalization, 35% support marijuana use for medical purposes only, 13% would like it decriminalized, and 14% said it should remain illegal.

Kimball notes: “It looks like Texas is headed, at the very least to medical marijuana in the near future. Among Democrats, 54% support full legalization compared to 27% who prefer medical uses only, and among Republicans, 44% opt for medical purposes only as compared to 22% who support full legalization. Independents are split on the issue with 39% supporting legalization and 35% supporting it for medical purposes only; even among Republicans only 24% said they wanted to keep it totally illegal.”

As expected, younger voters 18-29 prefer legalization 59% to 21% for medical purposes. Among older voters (those over 65), 45% agreed for medical purposes only, and 17% supported full legalization.


US Senate

In a potential 2020 U.S. Senate Race between Senator John Cornyn and former House candidate M.J. Hegar, the GOP incumbent Senator leads with 29% and Hegar is at 12%, 16% prefer someone else, and 44% are unsure of their choice. Kimball adds,  “It is clear that Hegar has some work to do to sow up party support, as Hegar gets only 25% of the Democratic voters, while 50% of the Dems are unsure.” Kimball continues, “On the other hand, Cornyn is getting 52% of Republican voters, with only 34% of GOP voters unsure.”


Caller ID

The Texas Emerson College poll was conducted April 25-28, 2019 under the Supervision of Professor Spencer Kimball. The sample consisted of registered voters, n=799, with a Credibility Interval (CI) similar to a poll’s margin of error (MOE) of +/- 3.4 percentage points. The data was weighted based on a 2016 voter model of race, region, mode, age. It is important to remember that subsets based on gender, age, party breakdown, ethnicity and region carry with them higher margins of error, as the sample size is reduced. Data was collected using both an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system of landlines only (n=559) and an online panel provided by Amazon Turk (n=240). Visit our website at ​​.

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Transparency Intiative

CNBC: A top progressive pundit says mainstream Democrats are worried about Bernie Sanders winning the White House in 2020

The Vermont democratic socialist may have surprised the party’s establishment with his strong performance so far. He’s been polling second, behind only former Vice President Joe Biden, who has yet to enter the race. Sanders also took the lead in an Emerson poll released Tuesday. He raised more than $18 million in the first quarter of 2019, the most money of any Democratic contender. And his base of loyal followers, who made him a force in the 2016 primary, has not gone anywhere.

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USA Today: Bernie Sanders leads Joe Biden in Emerson national poll of 2020 contenders

Sen. Bernie Sanders finished ahead of Joe Biden in the first major national poll of the year that did not find the former vice president leading the pack of potential 2020 Democratic presidential candidates.

When asked whom they would support from a list of 20 candidates – including “someone else” –  29% named Sanders, and 24% named Biden in an Emerson College poll released Monday. They were trailed by South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who was the pick of 9% of likely Democratic primary voters

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April National Poll: Bernie Takes Lead for Democratic Nomination, Mayor Pete On The Move

A new national Emerson poll, including 20 Democratic candidates for President, found Senator Bernie Sanders ahead of the pack with 29%, followed by former Vice President Joe Biden at 24%. They were followed by Mayor Pete Buttigieg at 9%, former Rep. Beto O’Rourke and Senator Kamala Harris at 8%, and Senator Elizabeth Warren at 7%. Entrepreneur Andrew Yang and former HUD secretary Julian Castro were at 3%. The poll was conducted April 11-14 of Democratic Primary voters with a subset of n=356, +/- 5.2%.

Spencer Kimball, Director of Emerson Polling, said “while still early in the nominating process, it looks like Mayor Pete is the candidate capturing voters’ imagination; the numbers had him at 0% in mid-February, 3% in March and now at 9% in April.”

Kimball also noted that “Biden has seen his support drop. In February, he led Sanders 27% to 17%, and in March the two were tied at 26%. Now, Sanders has a 5 point lead, 29% to 24%.”

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Vox: Pete Buttigieg has gone from totally unknown to polling third in Iowa and New Hampshire

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Washington Post: Why hasn’t Elizabeth Warren achieved liftoff?

But Warren 2020 hasn’t polled well in practice. On Monday, Emerson released a poll that showed her in third place behind Sanders and former vice president Joe Biden in her home state of Massachusetts. She has less than 6 percent support in national primary polls and is stuck in the single digits in both Iowa and New Hampshire. These numbers can change, but they’re not a great start.

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Washington Post: Biden and Sanders are the front-runners. They’ll need different voters to win.

But her voters also trend older than his do. She does better among voters over 45 than those under in three of the four national polls, and in the Emerson poll, her age profile perfectly mirrors Biden’s in that the older the voter gets, the higher her support. In fact, Harris, not Sanders, runs second to Biden among voters 65 and older in that poll. This raises a big question: If she has to drop out, what will be a more important factor for her voters — their ideology, which tilts them toward Sanders, or their age, which tilts them toward Biden?

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Massachusetts 2020: Sanders, Biden lead Warren in her home state; Mayor Pete in top four. Trump popular only with his base.

The first Emerson Poll in Massachusetts of the 2020 primary finds Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders with 26% of the vote in the Democratic field, followed by former Vice President Joe Biden at 23%, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren at 14%, Mayor of South Bend Pete Buttigieg at 11%, former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke at 8%, and California Senator Kamala Harris at 7%. 5% of voters are looking for another candidate. (April 4-7, n=371, +/- 5%).

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Washington Post: Trump has two big problems in 2020: Pennsylvania and Michigan

Michigan and Pennsylvania, however, are not sharing in the national gains quite so much. Their unemployment rates are above the national average, and rates are even higher in the regions that propelled Trump to victory. In Pennsylvania, for example, that’s the regions of Scranton-Wilkes Barre, Johnstown and Williamsport. Their unemployment rates all remain at or above 5 percent as of February. That’s down a point or so from when Trump took office, but it’s not “great again” either. It’s probably not a surprise, then, that Republicans didn’t mount a serious challenge for either major statewide race, lost four House seats in the midterms, and won another three seats with less than 52 percent of the vote. A recent Emerson poll also shows that Trump would lose Pennsylvania by 10 points to either former vice president Joe Biden or Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).

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