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Tue Jan 12, 2016, 04:15 AM

Bernie Sanders Pulls Ahead in Iowa 47-44 (ARG) [View all]

Bernie Sanders Pulls Ahead in Iowa 47-44 (ARG)
By MattTX
Monday Jan 11, 2016 3:03 PM EST

There have been a lot of good polls coming out for Bernie Sanders over the past week. Pollsters stopped polling over the holidays, but now that polling has resumed, it seems clear that Bernie Sanders has re-gained the momentum in the Democratic Primary. As people sat down with family and friends over the holidays, and the discussion turned to politics, something seems to have shifted in the Democratic race.

The latest of those good polls, after the IBD/TIPP poll earlier today that showed a 4 point race nationally, is a new ARG poll of Iowa, which has Sanders ahead in the Iowa Caucuses by 47-44 over Clinton.

The race is tied among Democrats, who make the vast majority (88%) of the sample. Among Independents (No Party), Sanders leads by a whopping 54-30. ARG is assuming that very few independents will go to the caucuses and change their registration on caucus night to vote in the Democratic caucuses, but even so, Sanders is ahead. If there is a surge of independent voters, as in 2008, then Sanders might do even better.

Vote by Party:

Overall Democrats (88%) No party (12%)
Sanders 47% 46% 54%
Clinton 44 46% 30%
O'Malley 3% 3% 7%
Undecided/Other 5% 5% 9%

Moreover, Sanders’ 47-44 lead is assuming a tight likely voter screen with a narrow electorate — if only the most likely voters actually vote (people who said they would definitely vote). But if more people vote, then Sanders’ lead goes up by even more, because he leads by 49-42 among people who said they would probably vote. So the larger the electorate, the better Sanders is likely to do:

Likelihood to Vote:
Overall Definite - 10 (81%) Probably - 7-9 (19%)
Sanders 47% 47% 49%
Clinton 44% 44% 42%
O'Malley 3% 3% 3%
Undecided/Other 5% 5% 6%

The race is basically tied (Clinton leads by a single point) among voters contacted by landlines. The poll is mostly counting landline voters (64% of the sample). But Sanders has a big lead among voters contacted by cell phones. Including just a small number of cell phone only voters is enough to knock Sanders into the lead:

Method of Contact:
Overall Landline (64%) Cell phone/other (36%)
Sanders 47% 46% 49%
Clinton 44% 47% 40%
O'Malley 3% 2% 5%
Undecided/Other 5% 5% 6%

Sanders clearly excites young voters, and he has a big lead with voters under 50. However, he is not doing terribly by any stretch of the imagination among older voters in Iowa either. It takes longer for older voters to get to know Sanders, perhaps because they use the internet less, but in Iowa, where Sanders is barnstorming the state, he is picking up ground among older voters the more that they see him.

The poll is *NOT* assuming that young voters will vote in the large numbers they did in 2008. ARG has 41% of the sample as voters age 18-49. According to 2008 exit polls, in the 2008 Iowa Democratic caucuses, voters age 18-44 made up 41% of the electorate — a number that would be higher if voters up to age 49 were included. The electorate ARG envisions is more like that of 2004, (or maybe somewhere in between 2004 and 2008) in terms of age. In 2004 exit polls, 32% of voters were age 18-44 (again, it would be more if ages 45-49 were included, as in the ARG sample). So if the electorate is like in 2004, Sanders should do fine. But if it is more like in 2008, with more young voters, then Sanders could win Iowa handily, if this poll is right.

Overall 18 to 49 (41%) 50 and older (59%)
Sanders 47% 54% 42%
Clinton 44% 33% 51%
O'Malley 3% 4% 2%
Undecided/Other 5% 9% 5%

There is a significant gender gap. However, Clinton does have the support of a lot of men, and Sanders does have the support of a lot of women. It is not as though all women support Clinton and all men support Sanders:

Overall Male (46%) Female (54%)
Sanders 47% 57% 38%
Clinton 44% 36% 51%
O'Malley 3% 2% 4%
Undecided/Other 5% 5% 7%

More broadly, nationally, Bernie Sanders is clearly gaining ground. The national polling trend shows the rice tightening significantly...

MORE WITH LINKS AT: http://www.dailykos.com/stories/2016/1/11/1468465/-Bernie-Sanders-Pulls-Ahead-in-Iowa-47-44-ARG

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