By Maya Rhodan
February 1, 2016

A big turnout of first time caucus-goers could mean success for Donald Trump and Sen. Bernie Sanders at the Iowa caucuses on Monday night, according to a new poll.

The Quinnipiac University survey released Monday just hours before the caucus found Trump jumping out to seven-point lead (31%-24%) against Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in the Republican race, while Sanders edges out Hillary Clinton by three points—49%-46%, within the margin of error—in the Democratic race. The poll found that support for both candidates is higher among first-time caucus-goers than it is among those who have attended prior events. Both insurgent candidates are counting on a high turnout to prevail on Monday.

Among voters who are new to the caucus process, a group that is notoriously hard to turn out, Trump’s lead over Cruz widens to 18 points, and Sanders’ lead over Clinton widens to 27 points, according to the poll.

Most surveys in recent days, including the highly-respected Des Moines Register poll, have showed Trump ahead of Cruz. Polls have forecast a closer Democratic race, with Sanders leading some surveys and Clinton leading others.

 

The Quinnipiac University survey of 890 likely Republican caucus-goers and 919 likely Democratic caucus-goers, conducted Jan. 25-31, has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.3 percentage points for Republicans and 3.2 percent for Democrats.

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