Shocker: Clinton up 41 in Iowa

After weeks of seeing Bernie Sanders cut into her lead in Iowa, Hillary Clinton got some good news from a new Monmouth University poll of likely Democratic caucus-goers, who give the former secretary of state a 65-24 lead over the Vermont senator.  The surge is due partly to Joe Biden declining to enter the race and the media's almost universal declaration that Hillary did well in her testimony before the Benghazi committee.


The RealClearPolitics average of Iowa polls previously showed Clinton with a much more narrow lead over Sanders, with Biden in third place.

Among Sanders' supporters, a majority of 68 percent said they back Clinton as their second choice, compared with just 19 percent for O'Malley.

In terms of favorability numbers, 88 percent see the former secretary of state positively, versus 8 percent who do not. Meanwhile, 77 percent have a favorable view of Sanders, while 11 percent do not.

Approximately four in 10, or 40 percent, of those surveyed said that they are "completely decided" on their candidate, about double the share of Republicans who said the same in a Monmouth poll released Monday. Another 37 percent said they have a strong preference but are willing to think about other choices, 10 percent indicated a slight preference and 13 percent said they were undecided. Among the 31 percent of Democrats who said they have met a candidate campaigning in Iowa, 21 percent said they saw Clinton in person, while 16 percent said they saw Sanders.

Overall, 79 percent of Iowa Democrats said they thought their party is doing a good job representing their concerns, while just 12 percent said it was not. Those numbers stand in stark contrast with the GOP poll released Monday, which found that just 32 percent of Iowa Republicans approved of their national party's performance compared with 57 percent who did not.

For the moment, Democrats' dalliance with Sanders appears to be over in Iowa.  Given Clinton's powerful organization in the state, 41 points is a huge hill for Sanders to climb.

So Bernie, in order to deliver the Bern, is going to have to depend on outside factors to get back in the race – namely, Hillary Clinton's penchant for shooting herself in the foot.  And, of course, there's always a chance that an FBI investigation will lead to an indictment.  But if the FBI couldn't "find" enough evidence to indict Lois Lerner, it is doubtful they'll try very hard in Hillary's case.

So once more, the cloak of inevitability descends over Clinton.  What will she do to screw it up this time?  Stay tuned.

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