Two new polls
Two polls hit right before the election (on Friday, June 1st).
Here is the scoop:
The first poll came out in a Roll Call article on Friday morning (apparently leaked). We've heard from several sources that it was commissioned by the DCCC. The poll was conducted by Tulchin Research (reputable, 538 grade of B). It had a sample size of 500 voters. Live telephone interviews were conducted between May 22-24.
The results of the DCCC Tulchin poll are as follows:
Mike Levin (D) 17
Diane Harkey (R) 15
Doug Applegate (D) 12
Sara Jacobs (D) 11
Rocky Chavez (R) 11
Paul Kerr (D) 7
Kristin Gaspar (R) 7
Brian Maryott (R) 6
The second poll was released by the San Diego Union-Tribune and KGTV 10 News about an hour after the DCCC poll hit Roll Call. The U-T and KGTV paid for the poll. It was conducted by SurveyUSA (reputable, 538 grade of A). It had a sample size of 700. The methodology included a mix of IVR and live interviews, landline and cell, conducted between May 29-31.
Here are the results of the U-T/KGTV Survey USA poll:
Diane Harkey 24
Applegate (D) 11
Sara Jacobs (D) 11
Mike Levin (D) 10
Paul Kerr (D) 10
Rocky Chavez (R) 8
Bryan Maryott (R) 6
Kristin Gaspar (R) 5
Here's how these results fit in with all the other polls taken since February:
So... what does this all mean if you're voting strategically?
Well, the good news is that the odds of a Democrat making it through the primary are rising with Doug Applegate, Sara Jacobs, and Mike Levin all in strong contention for the second spot on the ballot. The bad news is that Chavez is still dangerous... the recent Tulchin poll has him at 11% and that's still close enough to the Democratic pack to keep him in contention. Also, his share of "already voted" is 12%, and those are in the bank. We're not out of the woods. Everyone must vote... and we still need to think about voting strategically.
But how do you pick a Democrat? Kerr is not a factor anymore, but the other three are neck and neck if you average the recent polls.
Here's where we net out: Doug Applegate is still the best strategic voting choice. Sara Jacobs has definitely done well and is in contention, but her momentum has stalled and she's still dependent on millennials who may or may not turn out. Mike Levin has been stuck in a range between 8% and 12% in every single poll except the recent Tulchin poll which is an outlier. The SurveyUSA poll taken a week after the Tulchin poll has him in his familiar range, at 10%. So there are huge questions about whether Levin has broken out or not... and we can't take one poll as gospel, especially since it was a leaked top-line result with no details.
If you can't stand Doug Applegate, then pick Jacobs or Levin. You can make arguments either way for these two candidates.
But whatever you do, please don't vote for Kerr - he's a spoiler right now. Every vote for Kerr is essentially a vote for Chavez.