CNN Poll: Looking to 2020, Beto O'Rourke on the horizon

As candidates for the Democratic nomination for president in 2020 begin to declare their intentions, a handf...

Posted: Dec 15, 2018 11:10 AM
Updated: Dec 15, 2018 11:10 AM

As candidates for the Democratic nomination for president in 2020 begin to declare their intentions, a handful of potential candidates hold on to most of the early support, according to a new CNN poll conducted by SSRS, and Texas Congressman Beto O'Rourke is a new addition to the top tier.

Former Vice President Joe Biden continues to top the list when the potential Democratic electorate is asked who they'd be most likely to support for the nomination, with 30% saying they would back him. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders lands in second with 14%. Support for each is about the same as in October. O'Rourke lands in third with 9%, up 5 points since October. New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker follows at 5%. California Sen. Kamala Harris and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren have each dropped 5 points since October and are now below 5% support.

Bernie Sanders

Beto O'Rourke

Business, economy and trade

Economy and economic indicators

Elections and campaigns

Elizabeth Warren

Government and public administration

Government organizations - US

Political candidates

Political Figures - US

Politics

US Congress

US House of Representatives

Elections (by type)

US Federal elections

US Presidential elections

Voters and voting

Donald Trump

None of the other 14 possible candidates tested hits 5% support.

RELATED: Full poll results

More than a year out from any primaries or caucuses and with most candidates undeclared, there are few meaningful demographic or political differences in the nomination race. One that helped define the 2016 battle for the Democratic nod between Hillary Clinton and Sanders continues on, with Sanders garnering much more support among younger voters (22% among those under age 45) than he gets among the older crowd (7% of those age 45 and up back him).

Rep. John Delaney of Maryland is the only fully declared candidate in the field of polled candidates, and former Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Julian Castro announced earlier this week that he is forming an exploratory committee. Neither earns 1% in the poll. Others have taken public, though not formal, steps toward running, and several have already made visits to the early primary states of Iowa and New Hampshire.

O'Rourke, the only candidate to make significant gains since CNN last polled on the race in October, said late last month that he hasn't ruled out a run for president, a shift from his flat denials of a run for the White House during his unsuccessful campaign for Senate earlier this year.

Among all adults, the top tier candidates are generally viewed more positively than negatively. Warren is one exception. She is a frequent target of President Donald Trump, and views of Warren tilt narrowly negative: 32% see her unfavorably, 30% favorably.

Among the potential Democratic electorate, however, Biden, Sanders, Warren, Booker, O'Rourke and Harris are all seen far more positively than negatively, with O'Rourke and Harris still unknown by a majority.

The size of the field suggests the race could go deep in to the primary season, a prospect many Democrats would like to avoid. The poll finds 51% of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents say it would be better for the party if one strong candidate emerged early on as the clear front-runner for the nomination, while 41% said they'd prefer a number of strong candidates to compete for the nod. That's a reversal from 2015, when 53% said they wanted to see a number of strong candidates contend for the lead, but only Hillary Clinton and Sanders ended up finding substantial support.

Self-identified Democrats split from Democratic-leaning independents on this question. Partisans are more apt to say they want to see one strong candidate emerge early (57% say so), while independents tilt toward a bigger, more competitive field (50% favor that).

Whoever may emerge from the Democratic nomination fight, just over half of all adults (51%) say they think Trump will lose his re-election bid, that's up from 47% who said so in October before the midterm elections saw sharp Republican losses in House races across the country. That figure includes 17% of Republicans who think the President will lose.

Less optimism in US economy

Views of the economy -- the President's strongest issue in terms of approval ratings -- are beginning to soften, according to the poll. If that trend continues it could prove a threat to his re-election chances. While most still say the economy is in good shape, perceptions of the economy as "very good," which had reached their highest level since June 2000 in a September CNN poll, have dropped 9 points, and the share who expect the economy to be in "very good" shape a year from now has dipped 10 points. Those declines come almost entirely among Republicans.

Trump has publicly attacked General Motors CEO Mary Barra over the company's decision to shutter plants in the US, and the poll suggests the public may back his criticism. Overall, 64% say that the loss of any manufacturing jobs in the US is a loss for the nation's economy because manufacturing is critical to economic success, while just 26% see the loss of manufacturing jobs as inevitable as the economy changes for the better.

But his tariff policies may not prove as popular. Most, 68%, say they see foreign trade as an opportunity for economic growth through exports rather than as a threat from imports.

The CNN Poll was conducted by SSRS December 6 through 9 among a random national sample of 1,015 adults reached on landlines or cellphones by a live interviewer, including 463 self-identified Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents. Results for the full sample have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.8 percentage points, it is 5.6 points for results among the potential Democratic electorate.

West Lafayette
Overcast
45° wxIcon
Hi: 51° Lo: 42°
Feels Like: 38°
Kokomo
Overcast
43° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 36°
Rensselaer
Overcast
41° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 35°
Fowler
Overcast
41° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 35°
Williamsport
Overcast
44° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 39°
Crawfordsville
Overcast
42° wxIcon
Hi: 51° Lo: 43°
Feels Like: 35°
Frankfort
Overcast
45° wxIcon
Hi: 51° Lo: 42°
Feels Like: 39°
Delphi
Overcast
45° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 41°
Feels Like: 38°
Monticello
Overcast
43° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 38°
Logansport
Overcast
43° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 38°
Dry and Cool for Remainder of Weekend.
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 160454

Reported Deaths: 4118
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion25691791
Lake14023358
St. Joseph9399165
Elkhart9026137
Allen8424230
Hamilton6293114
Vanderburgh601161
Tippecanoe383615
Hendricks3337133
Porter332350
Monroe330338
Johnson3207129
Delaware303474
Clark300763
Vigo268740
Madison244996
LaPorte231760
Cass226922
Warrick199565
Kosciusko193727
Floyd183968
Howard167066
Bartholomew145358
Dubois142726
Marshall142726
Wayne135331
Grant129739
Henry129730
Boone126950
Hancock122344
Noble119135
Jackson116417
Dearborn100028
Morgan97440
Lawrence94037
Gibson91512
Daviess90234
Clinton88916
Shelby87231
LaGrange82115
Knox79510
Harrison78324
Putnam75616
Posey7556
DeKalb74511
Fayette73218
Jasper6435
Miami6425
Steuben6408
Montgomery60422
White59915
Greene55838
Scott53413
Decatur51739
Adams5107
Whitley4696
Ripley4668
Clay4567
Sullivan45214
Wells44211
Starke4328
Wabash4329
Huntington4215
Orange41725
Spencer4046
Washington3843
Franklin37925
Jennings37313
Randolph37210
Fulton3714
Jefferson3455
Pike34018
Perry33314
Carroll33213
Jay3256
Fountain3193
Tipton28023
Vermillion2601
Parke2464
Blackford2313
Newton23011
Rush2254
Owen2101
Martin2010
Crawford1601
Pulaski1602
Brown1463
Ohio1317
Union1120
Benton1090
Switzerland960
Warren891
Unassigned0236

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events