By Tom Quiner
The phone is ringing off the hook.
Yesterday alone, I completed telephone surveys for two political polling organizations. Karen did a couple more in the past few days. We ignored another 4 or 5 calls from political campaigns and survey companies.
The first-in-the-nation Iowa Caucuses are eight months from tomorrow. These polls are significant in light of the large pool of Republican candidates. Since it is impossible for the television networks to stage debates with 24 candidates on stage, they will winnow the debaters down to the top ten based on the RealClearPolitics poll, which averages together numerous polls.
So the opinions of us Iowans is very important to candidates and the media.
The Des Moines Register announced the results of their latest Iowa poll on the front page of today’s newspaper. Scott Walker has moved to the head of the pack. The question asked was:
“Which of the following Republicans would be your first choice for president? And who would your second choice be?
The top 5 choices were:
Scott Walker 17%
Ben Carson 10%
Rand Paul 10%
Jeb Bush 9%
Mike Huckabee 9%
What was interesting is that Marco Rubio was next at 6%, despite the fact that he has only visited Iowa twice. Even more interesting, he was the leading second choice, with 12% naming him as their second favorite.
When the results are combined, 27% select Scott Walker as their first or second choice; Rubio is second with 18%; and Mike Huckabee is third with 17%.
Carly Fiorina has enjoyed a remarkable surge in popularity in Iowa. Her favorability rating has soared from a mere 15% in January to 41% in last week’s poll.
It is early. Results are fluid. But in light of the the fact that the first debates are less than three months out,these polls take on added significance.