In Crowded GOP 3rd Congressional District Field, Zaun Leads but Convention Selection Increasingly Likely, Loras College Poll Shows

The Loras College Poll released results Tuesday showing a largely static race in the District 3 GOP Primary.  With a crowded field of candidates, time running out before the June 3 primary, and no one candidate emerging as the presumptive outright favorite, the prospects for a convention to choose the nominee are increasing.  As in the April Loras College Poll, State Senator Brad Zaun is leading the pack, but remains well below the 35 percent threshold required to decide the nomination in the primary.
In the Congressional District 3 GOP primary, the results are:
Zaun                           17.4 percent
Cramer   8.3 percent
Young                          8.0 percent
Schultz                                     7.6 percent
Shaw                            5.3 percent
Grandanette                 2.0 percent
Undecided                 50.3 percent

“There really hasn’t been much movement in this race since our last poll,” said Associate Professor of Politics and Director of the Loras College Poll, Christopher Budzisz, Ph.D. “Zaun’s support level remains where it was six weeks ago and he has not really capitalized on his frontrunner status.” 
“Several of the other candidates, although better funded than Zaun, have been unable thus far to emerge out of the pack. These next two weeks will be critical, as the relatively better financed Cramer, Young, Schultz, and Shaw seek to overtake Zaun and strike a victory and avoid a convention.  That is a tall order in two weeks, however,” Budzisz remarked.
The results released today indicate that there are still large numbers of undecided voters, with 50 percent of those surveyed indicating that they had yet to decide on a candidate.  This number isn’t much reduced from the April result of 58 percent undecided, and further signals that the race is somewhat static.
“I suspect that all the campaigns are fine tuning their convention strategies now.  They are also simultaneously making those final big ad blitzes and canvassing efforts in order to try secure the election before the convention or make their case more powerfully to the convention delegates if it comes to that.  It will be an interesting couple of weeks,” Budzisz remarked.
The Loras College Poll surveyed 300 likely 3rd Congressional District GOP primary voters May 14; district results have a 5.65 percent margin of error. 
  • Survey includes both landlines (80 percent) and cell phones (20 percent). 
  • Lists for the sample included only those who voted in the 2010 Republican primary or 2012 Republican primary.
  • The survey was conducted using live operator interviews through a contracted professional call center.
  • In addition, the survey was balanced using historical voting patterns for age, gender and geography.  Script development and methodology used for the survey received input from Republican campaign consultant, Steve Grubbs, and Democrat campaign consultant, Dave Heller. 
For more on today’s announced results, please click here.
Loras College Poll results from the congressional primaries will continue on May 21 (District 1 Democratic and GOP).  A complete copy of all the survey results will be released on May 21.
The Loras College Poll is conducted several times each year.  Loras College faculty and student researchers work as part of the survey research team to develop poll questions, analyze and interpret the data and assist with sharing the final results with local, regional and national media. 
Capitalizing on its location in the politically vital and vibrant state of Iowa, the Iowa Presidential Caucuses serves as a cornerstone of the Loras College Poll, with additional surveys focused on current events, social issues, economic issues, politics and more.
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