A new KING 5 poll finds Democrat Suzan DelBene’s TV commercials are apparently having an impact, boosting her numbers by 13 points since our last poll in May.
In a new poll of 563 likely voters in the 1st Congressional District, John Koster leads a field of seven candidates with 38%. As the only Republican in the race, Koster is virtually assured of getting through the August Top Two primary based on this latest poll. Delbene comes in second at 17% with Democrat Darcy Burner at 13%. Democrats Laura Ruderman and Steve Hobbs get 6% and 5% respectively, with Democrat Darshan Rauniyar and independent Larry Ishmael both trailing with 2%.
SurveyUSA includes likely voters contacted on both landlines and cell phones between July 24 and 25, and has a margin of 4.2%.
Some highlights from the poll:
A TV campaign: Delbene is hitting the airwaves hard, spending more than a million dollars of her own money to make it through the August primary. While opponents have accused her of trying to buy the race, our KING 5 poll finds 79% of voters say a candidate’s wealth is not a factor in deciding who gets their vote for Congress. With DelBene’s fundraising advantage, it’s a race that is largely playing out on TV. Ruderman speaks frequently about doorbelling the district, but only 21% say they have actually met at least one candidate in person; 77% say they’ve met none of the candidates face-to-face.
It’s the economy: In deciding who to elect to Congress, 55% say economic issues are most important, followed by 16% who said social issues and 12% who said health care.
Favorable/Unfavorable ratings: As DelBene has sought to introduce herself on TV, she has also accumulated some unfavorable ratings. About 23% of voters have a favorable impression of DelBene, while 25% say they have an unfavorable impression of her. Burner sits at 19% favorable, 29% unfavorable. Meanwhile, Koster enjoys a 28% favorable rating, and 14% unfavorable.
Head-to-head: Looking forward to November, it couldn’t be closer. If the race were between Koster and DelBene, SurveyUSA finds it’s a dead heat—42% each. It’s also effectively a dead heat if it were Koster vs. Burner.
Telling indicators: In a district that was drawn to be a swing seat, 36% say a Congress person from a rural part of the district would represent their interests better, while 32% say an urban candidate would better identify with them. In the First District, President Obama leads Mitt Romney 50% to 40%, but the governor’s contest is effectively tied in this particular district with McKenna 46%, Inslee 44%. Inslee represented a good portion of this district before he resigned to run for governor. The boundaries have since been redrawn dramatically.