Hoosier Survey Shows Mixed Bag of Results for 2020 Presidential Candidates

(MUNCIE) – Hoosiers have mixed feelings about the 2020 Democratic field of presidential candidates and there are troubling signs for the reelection of President Donald Trump, according to preliminary results of the Old National Bank/Ball State University 2019 Hoosier Survey.

In the telephone survey of 600 adult Hoosiers, respondents were asked if they were familiar with and would consider voting for five specific 2020 Democratic presidential candidates: former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Bernie Sanders  of Vermont, Sen. Kamala Harris of California, Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, and South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend.

Sanders and Biden have the highest rate of name recognition among the five candidates at 92% and 91%, respectively. Despite being from Indiana, only 61% of respondents had heard of Buttigieg. This number was below Warren, of whom 73% of respondents had heard. Harris was just behind Buttigieg at 60%.

Sean Hildebrand – Political Science

 “Despite being the Democratic nominee for State Treasurer in 2010, Mayor Pete still has some work to do on his recognition here in his own state, let alone other early primaries/caucus states,” said Sean Hildebrand, a Ball State political science professor and a member of the Bowen Center for Public Affairs, which conducts the annual public opinion survey.  “These results demonstrate how fluid the race remains here in Indiana, as demonstrated by polling performed in other states.”

Biden also garnered the highest rate of respondents stating they would have a “good chance” of voting for him in 2020 at 33%, and also had the highest rate among the candidates of having a “good chance” or at least “some chance” of gaining the respondent’s 2020 vote at 52%.

Sanders was right behind the former vice president with 31% giving him a “good chance” at receiving their 2020 vote, and 49% at least “some chance.” Warren garnered 42% for “some chance” while Buttigieg and Harris received 34% and 30%,respectively.

But it’s not all good news for Biden and Sanders. The two also have the highest rate of respondents who said they would give those candidates “no chance” to receive their vote. Sanders received 44% of respondents who aid no chance to Sanders, while 39% said no to former Biden.

The survey also found warning signs in the polling data for Republicans. Biden and Sanders receive support from a significant number of Republican respondents. About 25% of Republican respondents say they have a “good chance” of voting for Sanders, and 37% say “some chance”.

Biden’s numbers were similar at 24% for “good chance” and 42% for at least “some chance.”

Independent respondents gave slightly higher rates of support for both candidates as well, with 52% saying at least “some chance” they will vote for  Sanders, and 50% saying at least “some chance” they would vote for Biden.

“It’s a long way to election day 2020, and things can and likely will change. But alarms should be going off within the state and national Republican party if one-quarter of Republican respondents to the Hoosier Survey say there is a ‘good chance’ they are considering voting against President Trump. Even half that number of potential defectors is a major problem for the GOP.”

The full report will be released Nov. 12, 2019.

Survey Methodology

The Old National Bank / Ball State University 2019 Hoosier Survey obtained telephone interviews with a representative sample of 600 adults living in Indiana. Telephone interviews were conducted by landline (315) and cell phone (285, including 200 with adults with no landline phone). The survey was conducted by Issues & Answers Network, Inc. (I&A). Interviews were done in English from October 8-28, 2019. Statistical results are weighted to correct known demographic discrepancies. The margin of sampling error for the complete set of weighted data is ±5.2 percentage points.