Dem PAC Poll: DePasquale 50, Perry 43
A national Democratic PAC says that challenger Eugene DePasquale has the edge over Rep. Scott Perry (R-York) in the 10th Congressional District.
First reported by Politico, House Majority PAC has released a poll that shows DePasquale leading Perry by 7 points, 50%-to-43%, among likely voters in the district that included “leaners.” DePasquale extends his lead by 1 point, 50%-to-42%, among likely voters in the district without asking the respondent if they are “leaning” towards supporting either candidate, while 5% remain undecided.
The results show progress for DePasquale in comparison to June polling commissioned by the group that showed Perry leading DePasquale by 6 points, 50%-to-44%.
House Majority PAC is a Democratic super PAC endorsed by House Democratic leadership (it’s the counterpart to the Congressional Leadership Fund on the GOP side). It is influential in setting the national congressional target map for various left-leaning groups. However, strict rules prohibit super PACs from coordinating directly with candidates or committees like the Democractic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), so it must publicize polling it wishes to share with those entities.
The poll was conducted by Victoria Research and included 401 interviews of likely voters. 60% of interviews were conducted with respondents on cell phones, while 40% were landlines. The 401 interviews were conducted between September 22-24 and the poll has a ± 4.9% margin of error.
According to the analysts at FiveThirtyEight, Victoria Research & Consulting favors Democrats by an average of 0.1% and has an overall B/C grade. Victoria Research’s website says that the group provides “political research for a range of clients including Democratic party organizations, independent expenditures (IEs), political action committees (PACs), state caucuses, labor unions, non-profit organizations, and Democratic candidates at the local, state, and federal levels.”
As with any internal poll, the results should be taken with a grain of salt.
When forced to choose a side, voters narrowly support the generic Democratic candidate for Congress over the Republican candidate. 46% polled said that if the election were held today that they’d be voting for the Democratic candidate for Congress, while 43% said that they’d be voting Republican, and 7% said they were unsure. After “leaners” are taking into consideration, 47% said they would like to vote for the Democratic candidate for Congress, while 44% said they would vote Republican. This is also an improvement for Democrats in comparison to the polling from June that showed the Republican candidate for Congress had the edge by 4 points, 47%-to-43%.
Although President Donald Trump carried the boundaries of this district by nearly 10 points in 2016, former Vice President Joe Biden has the lead in this poll. 50% polled said that they’d vote for Biden for president, while 44% said that they’d vote for Trump, and 4% remain undecided, plus 2% said neither candidate. After “leaners” are taken into consideration, 51% supported Biden, while 44% back Trump. June polling from the group showed Biden and Trump locked at 46% each.
The Perry campaign did not respond for comment on this poll, although they have cited a policy in the past that they will not comment on any polling.
The DePasquale campaign touted the results from the poll and credited the voters getting to know his record as Auditor General as the reason he’s leading.
“The more South Central Pennsylvania families get to know about Eugene’s record of independent leadership, from ending the state’s rape kit backlog, spurring legislation to lower prescription drug costs through his audit of Pharmacy Benefit Managers, to holding politicians of both parties accountable in Harrisburg, the more our lead continues to grow,”said DePasquale for Deputy Campaign Manager, Kunal Atit.
This poll paints quite a different picture in comparison to a poll commissioned by the York Dispatch in late August to early September. That public survey showed Perry leading DePasquale by 6 points, 44.7%-to-38.4%. That poll showed the York County Republican’s lead outside the margin of error, although the pollster described the race as a “toss-up.”
This is now the third Democratic poll in the race for the 10th District. In late May, days before the Democratic Primary, DePasquale’s campaign commissioned a poll conducted by GBAO that showed Perry leading by 3 points, 50%-to-47%. Polling from DFM Research conducted in early August showed DePasquale with a 2 point lead, 46%-to-44%.
Perry, who is serving in his fourth term in Congress, edged out Democrat George Scott by just over 2.5 points in 2018 in the newly drawn district with boundaries that voted for President Donald Trump by 10 points in 2016. Perry’s latest bid was his closest victory since being voted into Congress in 2012 in the old conservative 4th District.
A trio of national ratings outlets have this currently rated as the tightest congressional race this fall. Inside Elections lists the race in PA10 as Tilt Republican, while Larry Sabato’s Crystal Ball and the Cook Political Report have it as a Toss-Up.