by John Hawkins | June 26, 2006 1:00 pm
Tomorrow, John Jacob and Chris Cannon are going to go head to head in a Republican primary, in Utah’s 3rd Congressional District.
Cannon is a 5-term incumbent with an excellent conservative record — except on illegal immigration, where he supports the Senate amnesty plan. John Jacob is a raw political rookie who’s also very conservative — but unlike Cannon, Jacob is also tough on illegal immigration.
Polling has been hard to come by until these last few days, but there are now a few polls for us to take look at. The Deseret News did a poll of registered voters, which seems pointless given that it’s not an open primary. However, when they yank the Republicans out of the poll numbers, here’s what they come up with:
“Cannon still leads, 49-42 percent, among those who told Jones they have a high interest in the election and “definitely or probably” will vote in the closed Republican primary. But when you take the voters who have a “high interest” in the race and drop in the poll’s margin of error, statistically speaking, Jacob could pull the race out.”
The Salt Lake City Tribune also did a poll, but their poll was of likely” Republican primary voters. It showed 44% favoring Cannon and 41% favoring Jacob. Also, “Of those who said they are “definite” about voting in the primary, Mr. Jacob netted 45 percent and Mr. Cannon netted 44 percent.”
Looking at those numbers, this has to be considered a toss-up — which is amazing if you think about it. Cannon is a conservative, 5-time incumbent with plenty of money. He has been endorsed by George Bush and has had recorded phone messages featuring Laura Bush going out to Republican voters in his very conservative district.
Meanwhile, John Jacob has never run for office before, has made some rookie mistakes, and has been mocked by his political opponents because he believes in the devil and thinks Lucifer would prefer to see him lose the election.
Yet and still, the race is a toss-up based solely on the fact that Jacob is tough on illegal immigration and Cannon isn’t. There’s a message in that for Republicans in Congress. Oh, and personally? I’m rooting for Jacob to knock Cannon off because I think it would send a shockwave through Congress that would practically guarantee that the House won’t back off on the illegal immigration issue come hell or high water.
Tomorrow, we’ll get to see if Jacob can pull it off and if the Republicans in Utah are going to send the GOP a message that they won’t soon forget.
An Exclusive Mini-Interview With John Jacob
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