Tom Kacich | Poll shows 13th Congressional District race just as tight as in 2018

A recent poll of voters in Illinois’ 13th Congressional District, which includes Champaign-Urbana, gives Democratic challenger Betsy Londrigan a narrow lead over incumbent U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis.

But Londrigan’s

43 percent-to-41 percent advantage (with 16 per-

cent not sure) is well within the poll’s margin

of error of plus or minus

4.5 percentage points.

So it just confirms what everyone expected: the race is as close as it was two years ago, when Davis defeated Londrigan by less than 1 percentage point, or 2,058 votes, in the 14-county district that extends to the Illinois suburbs of St. Louis.

The poll of 500 registered voters in the district was taken July 31 through Aug. 7 by RMG Research for the group U.S. Term Limits.

That group is trying to persuade Londrigan to endorse term limits, a position she resisted in 2018.

“I believe that every election acts as a term limit,” she told the Belleville News-Democrat that year.

And a Londrigan spokeswoman said that the candidate would not let polls or outside groups determine her policy positions this year, either.

She’s going to continue hammering Davis on health care issues, including lowering costs for prescription medicine, the target of more than $125,000 worth of television advertising in the last week.

Davis, now running for his fifth term, has also withstood endorsing term limits.

U.S. Term Limits contends that Londrigan would win fairly easily if she signed the organization’s pledge, which says that as a member of Congress, she would co-sponsor and vote for “the U.S. Term Limits Amendment of three (3) House terms and (2) Senate terms and no longer.”

The 13th District poll showed that 55 percent of those surveyed “strongly favor” term limits and 22 percent “somewhat favor” them. Only 13 percent somewhat oppose or strongly oppose term limits.

If Londrigan signed the pledge, the group said, 46 per-

cent of those polled would support her, 31 percent would back Davis and 23 percent would still be unsure.

U.S. Term Limits is conducting polls in 12 House districts nationally (the 13th is the only one in Illinois) and in Senate races in Iowa and Maine.

“Nearly every poll showed the same thing: Between

85 percent and 95 percent of Americans are unaware that their representative in Congress opposes term limits,” said Nick Tomboulides, executive director of U.S. Term Limits, “and a candidate who signs the pledge to back a term-limits amendment would pick up about 13 points in the polls on average.”

He said it’s not uncommon for congressional candidates to avoid the term-limits issue.

“We are pointing out that term limits is the most popular and bipartisan issue in America and it is going virtually ignored by candidates and the political class,” Tomboulides said. “That’s baffling. They are missing a huge opportunity. We think it would be a no-brainer to campaign on this issue and earn support.”

RMG Research is run by pollster Scott Rasmussen. According to FiveThirtyEight, Rasmussen’s polls are fairly accurate, earning a grade of C-plus, but they have a slight bias toward Republicans.

With those caveats, here are a few more interesting nuggets taken from the 13th District poll:

  • More people disapprove than approve of the way President Donald Trump is doing his job. Some 43 percent either somewhat or strongly approve, while 53 percent either somewhat or strongly disapprove. Crucially, 47 percent “strongly disapprove.” That’s a notable change from 2016, when Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in the district, 49.4 to 44 percent.
  • Trump does especially poorly among women (58 percent disapproval), 18-to-34-year-olds (60 percent disapproval) and non-Whites (54 percent disapproval).
  • Democratic nominee Joe Biden fared no better overall than Trump, although the survey was taken well before the Democratic convention where he formally became the candidate. Biden’s ratings: 17 percent very favorable, 24 percent somewhat favorable, 14 percent somewhat unfavorable and
  • 39 percent very unfavorable.
  • More people have a favorable opinion of Davis than unfavorable (40 percent to 35 percent), although 24 percent are unsure. His highest favorables are among men (46 percent) and those 55 and older
  • (48 percent). Londrigan’s highest favorables are among women (41 percent). Both have high percentages of voters who don’t appear to know much about them. In Londrigan’s case, for example, 43 percent of voters age 18-34 say they are not sure what they think about her. Overall, 32 percent are unsure. That suggests that advertising could be a helpful tool to help define her. As of June 30, she had more than $2.2 million on hand to devote to messaging.


via The News-Gazette

August 24, 2020 at 03:01PM

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