General election tie in new WA-1 Poll

Results of a new SurveyUSA poll in Washington’s first congressional district (via KING 5) are out. The poll was taken on the 24th and 25th of July on a sample of 563 likely voters in the district (4.2% MOE). The results:

  • John Koster (R), 38%
  • Susan Delbene (D), 17%
  • Darcy Burner (D) 13%
  • Laura Ruderman (D) 6%
  • Steve Hobbs (D) 5%)
  • Darshan Rauniyar (D) 2%
  • Larry Ishmael (I) 2%

The best news about this poll is the 43% that Democratic candidates take, edging out Koster’s support at 38% (or 40% if you include Republican-turned-independent Ishmael). In head-to-head general election contests:

If the race were between Koster and DelBene, SurveyUSA finds it’s a dead heat—42% each. It’s also effectively a dead heat if it were Koster vs. Burner.

Of course, with 17% (primary) and 16% (general) still undecided, there is a lot of room for change between the end of the primary and the general election.


  1. 1


    Darcy Burner has led in the polls until the last 2 weeks when her closest opponent, Suzan Del Bene spent a cool 2 Mill of her own money on TV ads, street signs and slick mailings.

    I saw and talked with Suzan Wednesday night, and given the cash she’s dumped into the campaign, you’d think there would be some passion coming from her. Not so.

    Sometimes I get the feeling of a deer caught in the headlights from her. Jonathon Martin gave me some insight into that impression with his article in the Seattle Times on the 17th.

    The Del Bene campaign is based on two themes: hard times in the family when her father lost his job, and being a successful business woman Seems, according to Martin, these are both false stories.

    The image her campaign projects, ”the quietly competent fixer for middle-class America,” as Martin labels it, is tarnished with the false claims of Del Bene’s narrative of herself as an up-from-the-bootstraps hard worker.

    The time she describes as “her family torn apart” is a central anecdote in Del Bene’s biographical TV ad. But, as reported in the Seattle Times, by Martin, the ad “doesn’t mention that she grew up skiing in Vail, or attended an elite Connecticut boarding school — Choate Rosemary Hall (President Kennedy attended Choate) — on scholarship.

    When DelBene’s stepfather found work as a pilot in Iran, DelBene got plane tickets to Iran for Christmas. And she attended Reed College in Portland, one of the nation’s most expensive private colleges.”

    Further, it appears that the smear campaign connected to Laura Ruderman, also a candidate for the 1st CD slot in congress, has it’s facts straight. One of the hit ads says of Del Bene’s work at money-losing tech startups — “She got rich, while workers lost their jobs.” Neither startup turned an annual profit. Nimble was sold for less than $10 million after receiving $30 million in venture capital., which was sold to Walgreens for $429 million last year, employs about 240 at its Bellevue headquarters.

    According to Maritin, “DelBene worked after college as a football referee, and credits it with training her to make quick decisions with limited information.” Really? She sees this as a qualifying trait for a congresswoman?

    Del Bene went back to Microsoft in 2004 to take a senior leadership role in marketing the mobile smart-phone division. Market analyst Sid Parakh, has said that was “an absolute lost opportunity’ for Microsoft, which today holds less than a 5% share of the iPhone market and attributes this to a lack of focus and vision in DelBene’s division, according to Martin.

    Many who know her were surprised by her change in focus to politics. She didn’t seem all that interested in politics and rarely even voted. In nine years, before taking on Reichert in 2010, she voted only 8 out of 20 possible opportunities.

    The Washington State Progressive Caucus stands by it’s endorsement of Darcy Burner as a leader worthy of representing the people in Congress. The vote came at the Democrats State Convention in June, well before the facts of the Del Bene campaign were known, and before Ruderman threw her mother under the bus. Ruderman, by the way, is no progressive, despite her claims. Though she goes to the left on women’s issues, she is a centrist at heart, as proven by her record while serving in the state legislature.

  2. 2

    Liberal Scientist is a slut who occasionally wears a hoodie spews:

    Thank you for that analysis. I really don’t trust pols who try to buy their seats.

  3. 3


    It’s very difficult to trust polls these days. A little fact that everyone’s forgetting is that polling companies must rely on listed phone numbers. As the bulk of the population has switched to cell phones and voip this leaves the remaining land line users as the target audience. That would be the very old and the poor. I would say that leaves a very narrow sliver of the voting population and one in general that’s less informed and right leaning.

    A hat tip to Judith for the background info on DelBene. I knew something wasn’t right but couldn’t remember all the facts from the last time she ran. My biggest concern is the way our voting district was neatly changed to the benefit of the republican party. Makes you wonder if voter ID laws here will be next.

  4. 4

    SJ spews:

    Lib Sci

    Well, Suzan does have a lot more money but Darcy ain’t zactly in the 99%.

    The sad thing for those who like Darcy and admire her determination, is that she has run a very, very poor campaign for Congress. In moderate, business friendly district, Darcy showed huge passion for the progressive vote.

    I suppose one should say Darcy is being honest abut what she believes rather than focusing on selling herself to the voters of the first.

    Of course Darcy can still win, but I suspect the proportion of the undecided who might still vote for the Netroots candidate is very small.

    The good news for the DFems is that assuming DelBene wins, she is going to have built an image in the primary that is very attractive vs. Koster.

    Tome will tell if Suzan’s quietness works well in Congress.