Democrat Mike Levin has initial edge in 49th Congressional District poll
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 7/9/18
Contact: Parke Skelton (626) 535-9616
Democrat Mike Levin has the early edge in California’s 49th Congressional District over Republican Diane Harkey. Levin initially leads Harkey by 44 percent to 41 percent, and by 49 percent to 46 percent when we include those who lean toward a candidate.
The telephone survey was conducted June 24 through 27 by The Feldman Group, Inc., for the Levin campaign and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. The universe was voters who participated in 2016 or in any election since then and screened for likely participation in the November 2018 election. The base sample was 400 but the survey also included an oversample of 200 voters who declined to state a party preference or are registered in a minor party. The oversample was then down weighted to reflect its correct proportion of the electorate. The margin of error was +/- 4.6%.
Even at this early stage, voters in the 49th CD are highly polarized with few who are both undecided and without partisan leanings. However, a total of 31 percent of voters are either undecided or uncertain of their choice making early communication to Democrats and voters who decline to state a party preference (DTS) imperative. Levin is well-known and well-liked among Democrats who participated in June primary but less known among those who did not do so and less known among DTS voters. As both candidates have potential negatives, early communication to shore up Levin’s base is imperative.
Voters are looking for a candidate to work across party lines on behalf of local interests (52 percent) over a candidate who will shake up Washington and change Congress (36 percent). Voters here also do not want the election to be about President Donald Trump. While 40 percent say their attitudes toward Trump – on both sides – are the most important consideration in their decision, most do not say so, including an even larger proportion of DTS voters.
Levin’s environmental record is an important positive for him. Slowing climate change is a high priority to Democratic and DTS voters and Levin has a longstanding commitment to environmental issues. Environmental issues are critical locally in this coastal district. Additionally, both K-12 and higher education issues and health care are on voters’ agenda.
Levin’s edge is likely to depend on turnout as much as on persuasion. The 49th CD has a 5-point Republican over Democratic advantage in registration. Levin is carrying DTS voters, and especially younger DTS voters who lean Democratic. Their level of participation and that of the district’s small communities of color will be important in maintaining the Levin edge.