New Poll Shows New Face Leading Race to Replace Gary Peters

Former House members usually have the inside track in primaries, but a new poll from a group supporting a state rep puts Hansen Clarke behind in his comeback attempt.

Rep. Hansen Clarke, D-Mich.
National Journal
Jack Fitzpatrick
See more stories about...
Jack Fitzpatrick
July 31, 2014, 4:12 p.m.

A new poll shows an up­heav­al in the race to re­place Rep. Gary Peters in the House, with a former con­gress­man and an EMILY’s List-backed can­did­ate run­ning be­hind a pop­u­lar state le­gis­lat­or in the Demo­crat­ic primary.

State Rep. Rudy Hobbs leads by 14 points over former Rep. Hansen Clarke and South­field May­or Brenda Lawrence in a Mitchell Re­search and Com­mu­nic­a­tions poll con­duc­ted for Rep. Sander Lev­in’s GOAL PAC, which is sup­port­ing Hobbs. The poll sur­veyed 487 Demo­crat­ic voters from Ju­ly 28-30 in Peters’s dis­trict, which is open be­cause Peters is run­ning for the Sen­ate.

Hobbs re­ceived 40 per­cent of the vote in the sur­vey, while Lawrence re­ceived 26 per­cent, Clarke re­ceived 22 per­cent, and 11 per­cent said they were un­de­cided.

The res­ults de­vi­ate sharply from a mid-Ju­ly EPIC-MRA poll con­duc­ted for the De­troit Free Press show­ing Clarke with an 11-point lead. Hobbs was in third place with only 20 per­cent of the vote in that poll.

Soon after that poll, Hobbs re­leased two 15-second TV ads, one fo­cus­ing on edu­ca­tion and an­oth­er vow­ing to “stand up to the NRA.”

Hobbs has raised and spent more money than any oth­er can­did­ates in the race, and at­trac­ted sev­er­al ma­jor en­dorse­ments, in­clud­ing the Free Press, the De­troit News, De­troit May­or Mike Dug­gan, Lev­in, and Lev­in’s broth­er, re­tir­ing Sen. Carl Lev­in. Former rep­res­ent­at­ives of­ten have the in­side primary track if they de­cide to at­tempt a comeback, but at least one oth­er has also lost a primary this year. Former Re­pub­lic­an Rep. Quico Can­seco’s comeback at­tempt ended in the Texas primar­ies in the spring.

GOAL PAC has spent more than $220,000 back­ing Hobbs, while an EMILY’s List af­fil­i­ate has spent more than $250,000 back­ing Lawrence, ac­cord­ing to the Cen­ter for Re­spons­ive Polit­ics. Clarke held the seat un­til he lost it to Peters in 2012, after re­dis­trict­ing com­bined their seats, match­ing Clarke and Peters in the same primary. The dis­trict cov­ers De­troit’s wa­ter­front and curves through some of the city’s sub­urbs, in­clud­ing South­field and Farm­ing­ton.

What We're Following See More »
Trump Won’t Debate Sanders After All
1 days ago

Trump, in a statement: “Based on the fact that the Democratic nominating process is totally rigged and Crooked Hillary Clinton and Deborah Wasserman Schultz will not allow Bernie Sanders to win, and now that I am the presumptive Republican nominee, it seems inappropriate that I would debate the second place finisher. ... I will wait to debate the first place finisher in the Democratic Party, probably Crooked Hillary Clinton, or whoever it may be.”

UAW: Time to Unite Behind Hillary
3 days ago

"It's about time for unity," said UAW President Dennis Williams. "We're endorsing Hillary Clinton. She's gotten 3 million more votes than Bernie, a million more votes than Donald Trump. She's our nominee." He called Sanders "a great friend of the UAW" while saying Trump "does not support the economic security of UAW families." Some 28 percent of UAW members indicated their support for Trump in an internal survey.

Trump Clinches Enough Delegates for the Nomination
3 days ago

"Donald Trump on Thursday reached the number of delegates needed to clinch the Republican nomination for president, completing an unlikely rise that has upended the political landscape and sets the stage for a bitter fall campaign. Trump was put over the top in the Associated Press delegate count by a small number of the party's unbound delegates who told the AP they would support him at the convention."

Trump/Sanders Debate Before California Primary?
3 days ago
California: It’s Not Over Yet
3 days ago

"Clinton and Bernie Sanders "are now devoting additional money to television advertising. A day after Sanders announced a new ad buy of less than $2 million in the state, Clinton announced her own television campaign. Ads featuring actor Morgan Freeman as well as labor leader and civil rights activist Dolores Huerta will air beginning on Fridayin Fresno, Sacramento, and Los Angeles media markets. Some ads will also target Latino voters and Asian American voters. The total value of the buy is about six figures according to the Clinton campaign." Meanwhile, a new poll shows Sanders within the margin of error, trailing Clinton 44%-46%.