According to an article posted by the Patch, Donald Trump could lose Iowa caucuses because recent poll numbers do not assure the GOP candidate hopeful a victory in the state. Although Donald Trump had the lead over the other GOP hopefuls, Trump is only leading by a 5 percent margin over Texas Senator Ted Cruz, while the Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Politics Iowa Poll has a 4 percent margin error, which means Trump may lose due to several factors.
This Tweet from the Washington Examiner says that the polls show the Iowa race is too close to call.
PARSING THE POLLS: Final Iowa Poll Shows Race Too Close to Call https://t.co/EoFX1mJDrA— Washington Examiner (@dcexaminer) January 31, 2016
According to the Patch article, the factors that might cause Trump to lose the Iowa caucuses are the turnout by evangelical Christians, the fickle nature of Iowa voters, the difficulty in caucusing, and the weather.
Poll results from the Des Moines Register were released January 30 and show Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in the lead. Again, with the margin error set at 4 percent, there is no certain winner. Clinton has a very narrow lead (3 percent) over Bernie Sanders.
The article said that nearly half of Republicans who were questioned in the Iowa poll are evangelical or born-again Christians. According to the Patch, this group is consistently under-represented in polls. The article says that four years ago, 57 percent of Republican caucus-goers identified themselves as part of that group and in the Iowa poll, only 47 percent identified as evangelicals.
Poll director Ann Selzer adjusted the poll results to show a hypothetical turnout of the above group in that range and Trump still won but only by 1 percent.
Stuart Stevens, a Maryland GOP strategist, told the Register that he thinks Donald Trump can win Iowa. Stevens has worked on five presidential campaigns in the past but is neutral in this election. He also said that Trump “has little room for error.”
Bob Vander Plaats, the GOP “caucus kingmaker” who endorses Ted Cruz, may be able to deliver the thousands of evangelical voters in support of the Texas senator. Cruz also has Congressman Steve King on his side as well as Iowa talk-radio host Steve Deace. Deace and King also “hold sway” with Iowa’s most conservative Christian voters, according to the Patch.
Vander Plaat’s influence has been shown to count in winning over Iowa voters before. In 2012, Rick Santorum won the Iowa GOP caucus, and in 2008, Mike Huckabee beat Mitt Romney by 9 points to win the Iowa caucus.
Trump dismissed Vander Plaat’s influence by attacking him and calling him a “phony” and a “bad guy.” Trump has been trying to win over Christian voters by talking about his faith, quoting scripture, and promising that he will protect Christianity. A recent New York Times/CBS News poll said that Trump had the support of 42 percent of the nation’s born-again Christians. However, the Patch article says that Iowa voters may feel that Cruz, who is the son of a born-again Baptist minister, is the real deal; therefore, Trump could lose their vote to Cruz.
Trump bowed out of the latest GOP debate on Fox because of his feud with moderator Megyn Kelly, and some thought this might cause Trump to lose some voters. The poll released today, however, showed that not to be the case. Again, the poll is set to have a 4 percent margin error, so with Trump’s 5 percent lead over Cruz, it might prove to turn the vote in Cruz’s favor.
Do you think Donald Trump could lose the Iowa caucuses due to the margin error of the polls? Please post your comments below.
[Photo Credit: AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall]