A new internal poll from Democratic candidate Christina Finello shows her race against Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Bucks) for the 1st District is in a dead heat.
The survey commissioned by the Democratic challenger’s campaign and conducted by Global Strategy Group shows Fitzpatrick leading Finello by 2 points, 47-to-45. It interviewed 400 likely voters from Oct. 1-4 and has a ± 4.9% margin of error.
The poll was first reported by National Journal.
According to analysts at FiveThirtyEight, Global Strategy Group has an overall B/C grade and favors Democrats by an average of 1.8%. As with any internal poll, the results should be taken with a grain of salt.
The Fitzpatrick campaign dismissed the results from the internal poll as “fake.”
“Yet another fake poll by Christina Finello to follow up her fake fundraising press release,” said Kate Constantini, campaign spokesperson. “She peddles lies on every single front in her attempt to become relevant. Her problem is everyone both locally and nationally knows that they have a weak campaign because they have a weak and dishonest candidate.”
Finello’s campaign released an internal poll in June conducted by Public Policy Polling that also showed her trailing by 2 points, 40-to-38. The Fitzpatrick campaign and GOP super PACs have released internal polling that has shown Fitzpatrick leading by double digits.
Both Finello and Fitzpatrick claimed they broke fundraising records last quarter in separate press releases, although the data is not available on the FEC website yet.
The Finello campaign believes this latest poll is proof that momentum is on their side, while continuing to tie Fitzpatrick to President Donald Trump.
“Pennsylvania voters are sick and tired of the destructive Trump agenda and its enablers like Brian Fitzpatrick,” said Ali Anderson, Finello for Congress Campaign Manager. “Fitzpatrick has turned his back on middle-class families as Trump gives up on authorizing pandemic relief and bungles the coronavirus response. It’s no surprise momentum is on our side with less than a month to go.”
In addition to showing a race in which the Finello campaign says is “essentially tied,” due to the internal poll, they also show the Democratic challenger having the edge with moderate voters and describe Trump as a “huge liability” for Fitzpatrick, saying that “most view Fitzpatrick as a Trump ally.”
49% of moderate voters support Finello, while 39% support Fitzpatrick’s campaign.
40% have a favorable view of Trump, while 57% have an unfavorable view of him.
While Trump was competitive with Sec. Hillary Clinton in this district in 2016, this poll paints a much different picture against former Vice President Joe Biden.
54% polled said they’d vote for Biden for president, while 39% said that they’d vote for Trump. A previous internal poll from the Finello campaign in June showed similar results with Biden leading Trump by 16 points, 56-to-40.
Finello’s campaign has aired ads linking Fitzpatrick to Trump and the president’s response to COVID-19, while Fitzpatrick and GOP-backed groups have attacked Finello over crime related issues. This internal polling shows that a majority in the district view the coronavirus as a bigger risk to them and their families over the rise in crime.
60% said that the coronavirus and the risk it poses “to you and your family” is a bigger concern for them, while 36% said the rise in crime and the risk it poses “to you and your family” is the bigger concern.
Fitzpatrick is currently in his second term in Congress representing the Philadelphia suburban district. He bested pro-Trump Republican Andrew Meehan in the 2020 GOP primary by 20 points, which is a closer victory than his 2018 GOP primary win over pro-Trump Republican Dean Malik by 34 points. In the general election, Fitzpatrick defeated Democrat Scott Wallace by just over 2.5 points in the November midterm.
Fitzpatrick was just one of two Republicans nationwide to weather the blue wave in 2018 by winning boundaries that narrowly went to Sec. Hillary Clinton in 2016.
Several ratings outlets currently have the race as Leans Republican.