TO: Interested Parties
FROM: DCCC Targeting and Analytics Department
DATE: April 19, 2016
CLINTON LEADS TRUMP BY 22 IN MINNESOTA’S 3RD CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT
In Minnesota’s 3rd Congressional District, Donald Trump trails Hillary Clinton by 22 points, 24% to 46%, with 30% of voters undecided. Trump trails by 27 points among women and by 28 points among likely Independents.
Trump is toxic in the district, particularly among key groups of swing voters: 71% of voters have an unfavorable view of him. 74% of women, 72% of voters in Hennepin County, and 71% of likely Independents have an unfavorable view of Trump.
Trump’s unpopularity in the district creates a drag on down-ballot Republicans. Voters prefer a generic Democrat for Congress over a generic Republican by 1 point.
PAULSEN ONLY AT 38% SUPPORT, HALF OF VOTERS CANNOT RATE HIM
Erik Paulsen takes just 38% of the vote against an unnamed Congressional Democrat. 30% of voters support a Democrat and 32% are undecided. Nationally, long-term incumbents typically fare better than 38%, even this early in the election cycle: on average, incumbents earn 41% of the vote in recent polling. With a strong Democratic candidate and Trump at the top of the ticket for Republicans, this district is a potential Democratic pick up opportunity.
Even though Erik Paulsen has been in Congress since 2009, 50% of voters in Minnesota’s 3rd Congressional District say that they have never heard of him or that they are unsure how they feel about him, including 61% of likely Independents, leaving Paulsen vulnerable to a strong challenger. Paulsen only outperforms a generic Republican House candidate by 5 points.
Minnesota’s 3rd Congressional District has a history of supporting Democrats. In 2012, President Obama carried the district with 50.4% of the major party vote. That same year, Senator Klobuchar won the district with 64.6% of the major party vote.
The data in this memo is from a survey of 412 likely 2016 general election voters conducted on March 22-24 in Minnesota’s 3rd Congressional District. Respondents’ information came from the voter file and respondents were interviewed over the phone via a live survey. The margin of error is ± 4.8 percentage points.