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Democrats gain lead in three of Iowa's four House districts: poll

Democrats gain lead in three of Iowa's four House districts: poll
© Greg Nash

Likely voters prefer a generic Democrat over a generic Republican in three of Iowa’s four congressional districts, according to a Des Moines Register/Mediacom poll released Sunday.

The poll shows likely voters statewide prefer a Democrat to a Republican 47 percent to 42 percent, a reversal from a March poll that found 49 percent support for Republicans and 42 percent support for Democrats. The vast majority of respondents said they have made a firm decision, as opposed to only 2 percent who said they were “leaning” in the direction of one party.

At the district level, Democrats hold an 18-point advantage in the state’s 2nd District, which has been in Democratic hands since 2006, and by 16 points in its 3rd District, which includes Des Moines and which Rep. Cindy AxneCindy AxneIowa losses underscore Democrats' struggles with attracting rural voters Democrats face increasing pressure to back smaller COVID-19 stimulus On The Money: Powell says 'concerning' rise in COVID-19 cases could hinder economic recovery | House Democrats withdraw appeal in case over Trump's New York tax returns | Initial jobless claims dip to 751,000 MORE (D) won in 2018, defeating incumbent Rep. David YoungDavid Edmund YoungFirst-term Democrat presses for coronavirus relief agreement this year Axne wins reelection in Iowa Democrats lead in 3 of 4 Iowa House races: poll MORE (R).

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The advantage was narrower in the 1st District, with a 6-point advantage for Democrats. That district was also a 2018 Democratic pickup, with Rep. Abby FinkenauerAbby Lea FinkenauerIowa losses underscore Democrats' struggles with attracting rural voters Here are the 17 GOP women newly elected to the House this year Incoming Iowa GOP lawmaker tests positive for coronavirus MORE (D) defeating then-Rep. Rod Blum (R).

In the heavily Republican 4th District, Republicans have nearly doubled their lead since March to about 22 points. Since the previous poll, Rep. Steve KingSteven (Steve) Arnold KingFeenstra wins Iowa House race to fill Steve King's seat Democrats lead in 3 of 4 Iowa House races: poll Hillicon Valley: House votes to condemn QAnon | Americans worried about foreign election interference | DHS confirms request to tap protester phones MORE (R) has lost his primary to state Sen. Randy Feenstra (R). King, who has a history of inflammatory remarks, won reelection by about 3 points, the slimmest margin of his career in 2018, and the following January was stripped of his committee assignments after an interview with The New York Times in which he asked "White nationalist, white supremacist, Western civilization — how did that language become offensive?" and headed into the primary without institutional GOP support.

Pollsters surveyed a sample of 801 Iowan adults, including 674 likely voters. It has a 3.8-point margin of error statewide and a 7.7-point margin of error for individual districts.