ELECTION 2020

Democrats lead 3 of 4 Iowa congressional races in recent Monmouth poll

Rep. Abby Finkenauer is interviewed by journalists after meeting with Cedar Rapids city officials for an update on the c
Rep. Abby Finkenauer is interviewed by journalists after meeting with Cedar Rapids city officials for an update on the city’s flood control project on the east side of the 16th Avenue bridge on Thursday, July 16, 2020. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

Iowa Democrats are in position to retain the three congressional seats the party currently holds, according to new polling from Monmouth University.

The new Monmouth Poll shows the Democratic candidate in the lead in Iowa’s 1st, 2nd and 3rd Congressional Districts. It also shows a narrowing Republican edge in the 4th District.

“Democrats appear to be on track to retain the three House seats they currently hold and are making a run in a deep red district,” Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, said in a news release.

According to the Monmouth Poll:

• In the 1st District, Democratic incumbent Abby Finkenauer leads Republican challenger Ashley Hinson, 52 percent to 44 percent. According to the poll, the race is virtually tied in the nine counties that Finkenauer lost by a combined nine points two years ago.

• In the open-seat 2nd District, Democrat Rita Hart leads Republican Mariannette Miller-Meeks, 49 percent to 43 percent. This is a significant swing from Monmouth’s poll in August, which had Miller-Meeks ahead, 47 percent to 44 percent.

• In the 3rd District, Democratic incumbent Cindy Axne leads Republican challenger David Young, 52 percent to 43 percent. According to the poll, Young’s lead in the counties outside of Polk County is 10 points — he won the area by 17 points two years ago.

• In the open-seat 4th District, Republican Randy Feenstra leads Democrat J.D. Scholten, 48 percent to 42 percent. But that is a dramatic narrowing of the race from Monmouth’s poll in August, which had Feenstra ahead by 20 points, 54 percent to 34 percent.

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Monmouth surveyed 1,547 Iowa registered voters, using telephone and online questioning, from Oct. 15 to Oct. 20. The margins for error in the district-level polls are between plus or minus 4.8 and 5.2 percentage points.

National Democrats Invest In Iowa: The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, the political organization that works to elect Democratic majorities in state capitols across the country, announced it has invested more than $1.5 million in Iowa Statehouse races this cycle.

Iowa Democrats hope to regain a majority in the Iowa House, where they enter the election with a 53-47 seat disadvantage.

“Iowa is one of Democrats’ top priorities, and the momentum is on our side in the Hawkeye State,” Heather Williams, executive director of the DLCC’s legislative campaign committee, said in a news release. “Republicans retired in droves this year after reading the writing on the wall and realizing they’d need to spend life in the minority. Republicans have failed Iowans on everything from the pandemic response to public education, and our investments will hold them accountable and break up their power in the Legislature.”

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