In Washington State’s 1st Congressional District, Teeter-Totter Tips Ever-So-Slightly to Democrat DelBene

SurveyUSA Operations - 10/23/12 02:39 PM

16 Days till votes are counted in Washington state, Democrat Suzan DelBene may have a slight advantage over Republican John Koster, in a fight for the open seat in the 1st Congressional District, according to a SurveyUSA poll conducted for KING5-TV in Seattle. Today, it’s DelBene 47%, Koster 44%, within the survey’s possible sources of error, but a clear indication that DelBene has gained ground on Koster. Compared to an identical SurveyUSA poll released 5 weeks ago, DelBene is up 5 points, Koster is down 2 points. Koster had led by 4 points, now trails by 3, a 7-point swing to the Democrat. To see a graphical representation of the teeter-totter, click here to open SurveyUSA’s interactive tracking graph.

Koster holds 88% of Republicans. DelBene holds 86% of Democrats. Independents split. DelBene’s narrow advantage comes from moderates, where she leads by 21 points. Koster leads among those who do not have a 4-year college degree. DelBene leads among those with a 4-year college degree. Though voters today still cite the economy as the most important issue, social issues have increased in importance, compared to 5 weeks ago. Today, 25% of voters say social issues are most important, up from 17%. This benefits DelBene.

DelBene has a Plus 7 Net Favorability Rating today. Compared to SurveyUSA’s poll 5 weeks ago, DelBene has improved from a Minus 6, a 13-point gain. Koster has a Plus 6 Net Favorability Rating today. Compared to SurveyUSA’s poll 5 weeks ago, Koster has gone down, from a Plus 14, largely as a result of his unfavorable numbers being driven up.

By 47% to 39%, voters say DelBene better reflects their views on social issues. This is an 8-point gain for DelBene.
By 44% to 41%, voters today say Koster better reflects their position on economic issues. This is a 3-point gain for DelBene.
By 44% to 40%, voters say DelBene better identifies with the concerns of ordinary people. This is a 5-point gain for DelBene.
By 39% to 36%, voters say DelBene better represents the interests of the high-tech industry. This is a 6-point gain for DelBene.
By 46% to 31%, voters say Koster better represents the interests of rural voters. This is 4-point gain for DelBene.
By 50% to 42%, Republican Rob McKenna carries the district in a vote for Governor today. This is a 2-point gain for McKenna compared to 5 weeks ago.
By 48% to 45%, Barack Obama carries the district in a vote for President today. This is a 3-point improvement for Obama compared to 5-weeks ago.

Cell-phone and home-phone respondents included in this research: SurveyUSA interviewed 700 registered voters from Washington’s 1st Congressional District using registration based (voter list) sample from Aristotle in Washington DC. Of the registered voters, 610 were determined by SurveyUSA to have already returned a ballot, or to be be likely to do so before the 11/06/12 deadline. This research was conducted 100% by telephone. Respondents reachable on a home telephone were interviewed on their home telephone in the recorded voice of a professional announcer. Respondents not reachable on a home telephone were called on their cellphones by live operators, who hand-dialed the phones, qualified the respondent, secured the respondent’s cooperation, conducted the interview, logged the respondent’s answers, and remained on the line until the interview was completed. The U.S. House seat in Washington’s newly drawn 1st district is open; Democrat Jay Inslee resigned to run for Governor.

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