The first poll for the 2020 Iowa caucuses has just come out. The first survey of the first state, conducted by the Des Moines Register, CNN, and Mediacom revealed which Democratic hopefuls are in the best position to challenge President Donald Trump in the 2020 general election. One of the themes of the poll is that voters favor experienced politicians over upstart candidates.
Only three potential candidates sit above ten percent in this initial poll, and only one more candidate garners at least five percent. The top four prospects at this point – and this is guaranteed to change a zillion times – are as follows.
1. Joe Biden – 32%
2. Bernie Sanders – 19%
3. Beto O’Rourke – 11%
4. Elizabeth Warren – 5%
The next candidates, all polling less than five percent, are, in order . . .
5. Kamala Harris
6. Cory Booker
7. Amy Klobuchar
The firm that conducted the poll was Selzer & Co., led by J. Ann Selzer, who said, “This is obviously a warm welcome to some people who are really familiar to caucusgoers in the state. But there’s also some welcoming of newcomers who are only now starting to come to the state and get to know the people who could shape their future.”
The Iowa caucuses matter because they are the first polls of the primary season. But while they’re important, there is no guarantee that the winners will win their party’s support. In 2016, for example, Ted Cruz won the Republican caucus, but Donald Trump would win the party’s nomination. The one thing the Iowa caucuses do is to narrow the field.
Conventional wisdom – confirmed by historical results – is that the Iowa caucuses stamp the ticket for the three candidates with the most votes. So the candidates who finish out of the top three will be very unlikely to compete for the nomination. And considering the Democratic field in 2020 will be more crowded than a mall on Black Friday, jockeying for the top three positions will be critical.
So as of today, your three candidates coming out of Iowa will be Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, and Beto O’Rourke. But check back with us, because there is at least a 100 percent chance this will change.