A new poll of Iowa Republicans finds former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee topping a crowded GOP field with a narrow lead over second-place finisher Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY). Huckabee was the choice of 14% of Republicans, while 10% supported Paul. No other potential GOP candidate cracked into double-digits. More than 25% of Republicans are undecided.
The poll of 402 Republicans was conducted by WPAResearch on March 30th. “What’s interesting here is that for Gov. Huckabee, the majority of his support is being driven by voters 55 years or older,” Chris Wilson, of WPAResearch, said in a news release.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker was third, with 8% support, a point ahead of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), Jeb Bush and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was 7th, with 6% support.
Huckabee won the Iowa caucuses in 2008, largely due to his strong support among evangelicals. The eventual nominee, Arizona Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) finished fourth, with 13% of the vote.
Born-again and evangelical Christians make up a disproportionate share of the caucus vote in Iowa. In 2008, 60% of caucus-goers described themselves as evangelicals. In 2012, 57% of caucus voters identified as evangelical. That year, evangelical voters overwhelmingly supported former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, who effectively tied with Mitt Romney.