Poll: Clinton takes narrow lead in Iowa

Hilary Clinton
Hilary Clinton rallies in May 2008. — photo by Keith Kissel

A slim majority of Iowans view Hillary Clinton favorably, despite the former First Lady making herself sparse here over the last six years.

Polling data released this week by Quinnipiac University shows Clinton’s support in Iowa leads that of a handful of possible Republican presidential candidates. Clinton has a 52-percent approval rating here, according to the poll, and has at least a six-point lead on six Republican prospects Quinnipiac polled. Republicans Rand Paul and Paul Ryan come closest, training Clinton by six percentage points.

Clinton’s Iowa numbers are relatively strong even though she is widely rumored to not much enjoy Iowa, where she spent considerable time before the 2008 caucuses only to end up finishing third. She earned almost 30 percent of the delegates statewide, but only 20 percent here in deep-blue Johnson County.

Reporters John Heilemann and Mark Halperin wrote in their 2010 book Game Change, that she, “found the Iowans diffident and presumptuous; she felt they were making her grovel. Hillary detested pleading for anything, from money to endorsements, and in Iowa it was no different.”

That’s probably why she hasn’t stepped foot in the Hawkeye state she left a sore loser back in 2008. It’s been some 2,300 days since she was here, according to local Democrat activist-blogger John Deeth‘s count. In Hard Choices, the new book she’s been promoting, Clinton makes just one mention of Iowa – to say that her caucus-night defeat was “excruciating.”

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