CA-17 poll shows nearly one-third of voters are undecided

Polling overwhelmingly predicts Rep. Mike Honda
and Ro Khanna will meet again this November.

A recent KPIX/SurveyUSA poll showed a six-point spread between Democrats Rep. Mike Honda and Ro Khanna, but the most important figure in the survey is the amount of undecided voters.

The poll in advance of the June primary revealed 29 percent of respondents described themselves as undecided. The high percentage of wavering voters likely explains some skepticism among politicos over its efficacy.

According to the poll, measuring 600 registered voters in the district between May 18-23, reported support for Honda at 31 percent of likely voters, followed by Khanna with 25 percent.

Republicans Ron Cohen was next with 7 percent, followed by Peter Kuo with 5 percent. Somewhat surprisingly Democratic San Jose Councilmember Pierluigi Oliverio garnered just 2 percent, as did libertarian candidate Kennita Watson. The poll’s margin of error is +/-4.2 percent.


Two years ago, during the first Honda-Khanna matchup, both pre-election SurveyUSA polls were very accurate. In June 2014, polling showed Honda leading the pack by 19 points; he won by 20. Prior to the 2014 November Election, polling predicted a 2-point win by Honda; he later topped Khanna by just under 4 points.

However, this time around, SurveyUSA’s polling may not hit the mark. One line of thinking posits that a six-point spread for Honda would spell certain disaster for his prospects in November. Yet, there appears to be absolutely no fear coming out of Honda’s campaign. It is laying low, staying out of the fray and has produced just three positive, informational mailers.

Another reason to question the poll: 69 percent of its respondents participated via landline phone, as opposed to those using more ubiquitous cellphones.

Categories: CA17, June primary, Mike Honda, Pierluigi Oliverio, poll, Ro Khanna, Ron Cohen, SurveyUSA

2 replies

  1. Tavares, you are the only reporter who is unbiased. I mean you have a few hit pieces on Khanna and are a bit sympathetic to Honda. But, it doesn't color your objectivity. Thanks for pointing out the invalidity of this poll. My guess is if Khanna had any poll showing him in single digits he would release it. And he wouldn't be sending me 25 page brochures! Seriously. Obviously his camp is nervous at the numbers. Honda has sent almost nothing. They know they will do well. Both sides know that if it really were single digits, Honda would get blown out in November. Honda needs to be close to the 50% mark like last time to win in November. My guess is it will be closer to the 20 point margin like last time. Not much has changed, honestly. If it's 15 points or more, I think Khanna can kiss his dreams of being in Congress, goodbye. 10-15 it will be a fight and toss up. Under 10, Honda is toast and will probably retire. But, I just don't see that as a remote possibility or Honda would be throwing the kitchen sink at Khanna.


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