by Dan Kovats, Executive Director
@ILDCCA @dankovats

Surveys and polls are little more than a snapshot in time. But the IDCCA’s Presidential Straw Poll reveals a portrait of Democrats who are passionate about returning American ingenuity to our government and ejecting indecency from the White House.

In mid-April, the association opened an online poll asking respondents who they prefer as the Democratic Party’s 2020 nominee. More than 7,100 participants from all over Illinois (and a few from outside the state) answered our survey’s three questions:

  1. Who is your choice to be the 2020 Democratic Nominee for President?
  2. Who is your choice for Vice President on the 2020 Democratic ticket?
  3. What region of Illinois do you live?

Topping the list of popularity among the respondents was Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, who earned 1,700 votes for a 27 percent lead. Sanders has built a dedicated and passionate support network since his run for the White House in 2016. During that Democratic Primary contest, Sanders won over 48 percent of Illinois voters.

The online poll included a listing of 27 announced Democrats or candidates who were considering a run for the 2020 presidential nomination. Participants were also offered the opportunity to add their own preferred write-in candidate, though few legitimate submissions were received. Instead, 50 percent of poll respondents supported either Sanders or South Bend, Indiana mayor Pete Buttigieg.

Buttigieg received 1,479 votes, earning him over 23 percent of the total poll.

Buttigieg was a last minute keynote speaker to the IDCCA’s 2018 Chairs’ Brunch after former Vice President Joe Biden was unable to attend due to illness. To a packed house of more than 3,000 Illinois democrats, Buttigieg successfully beta tested his presidential stump speech; a speech that has connected with scores of American Democrats who are considering a relative newcomer to the national scene.

IDCCA President Kristina Zahorik said the straw poll was fun, but unscientific.

“The results we’re looking at must be taken with a grain of salt,” she says. “There are strong women and candidates of color who are building remarkable momentum. There are real challenges to well-known names who, in the past, have proven their abilities at the ballot box. Simply put, this is an open field for any candidate who can bring Democrats together to take back the White House and our country in 2020.”