U.S. GOP Rep. Chris Stewart seems a shoo-in to win re-nomination to his 2nd Congressional District, a new UtahPolicy.com/KUTV 2News poll shows.
While the Democratic Party nomination in the 2nd District is up in the air, a survey by Y2 Analytics finds.
Stewart, a strong supporter of GOP President Donald Trump, is favored by 73 percent of Republican district voters “likely” to vote in the late June closed party primary.
This Saturday Stewart and his three GOP challengers go before the state Republican convention, where around 1,000 delegates will vote on them.
Considering how well Stewart is doing with rank-and-file Republican primary voters — and his strong conservative and pro-Trump record — the archconservative delegates will likely favor him even more than the primary voters.
If Stewart can get 60 percent of the delegate vote or more, then he will win the nomination outright. None of his GOP challengers got 7,000 signatures to put them straight through to the primary — so the 2nd District GOP nomination will likely come at the convention.
One of the three, Mary Burkett, Ty Jensen, or Carson Jorgensen would have to get 40 percent of the vote to face Stewart in the primary, and that doesn’t seem likely. Burkett, the highest of the three, gets only 17 percent among likely GOP primary voters.
Meanwhile, on the Democratic side, Randy Hopkins and Kael Weston are neck-in-neck among likely Democratic primary voters.
Hopkins has 41 percent support to Weston’s 40 percent support. Larry Livingston comes in with 19 percent.
However, Y2’s sample of likely Democratic primary voters is small, just 59 folks, so the margin of error is so high that either Hopkins or Watson could be well ahead, or well behind.
The three Democrats meet in Saturday’s state Democratic convention — none of them got 7,000 signatures, either.
Considering that Democratic delegates tend to be more progressive, or liberal, than rank-and-file Democratic voters — and Hopkins and Weston are close among “very liberal” and “strong Democratic” voters as well — they could both advance to the June primary.
Stewart has easily won re-election to his seat in recent years. However, his victories have not been as wide as one may expect in the GOP-leaning district, mainly because most of progressive Salt Lake City is in the 2nd, and Stewart loses the city vote by huge margins, winning the rest of the district by enough to stay in office.
Utah Policy.com is partnering with KUTV 2News and Y2 Analytics and will be providing polling results on a regular basis throughout the election season.