WASHINGTON, October 25, 2015 – The political battle for Iowa caucus voters may come down to how GOP evangelicals in that state and their Christian faith become a launch pad for the eventual nominee. According to the Huffington Post, two new key polls in Iowa have catapulted Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson into first place ahead of billionaire former front-runner Donald Trump.
For many inside the Beltway, this is a scenario that did not seem possible. Trump had been leading in Iowa and nationally in the first weeks since tossing his hat into the presidential 2016 ring. Yet the calm but determined former neurosurgeon has steadily kept his surgical focus in building his growing support.
According to the new Bloomberg Politics/Des Moines Register Iowa Poll has Carson at 28 percent to Trump’s 19 percent standing. The poll findings strongly suggests that this dramatic turn of events was largely based upon evangelical Christians who have coalesced around him in the state, reported the Huffington Post.
For evangelicals and a majority of Christians throughout the nation, Dr. Carson’s candidacy has been based upon the kitchen table commonsense strength of everyday religious values that they treasure. This is a political blueprint approach that Washington insiders and long term political insiders have largely dismissed over the past several presidential election cycles.
What is even more mystifying for the monied GOP political scoffers is how Carson has used the power of God’s Word, which the founding fathers utilized to create the Bill of Rights and the U.S. Constitution. Iowans know the difference between political platitudes uttered in the moment of convenience and Christian principles lived over a lifetime, such as Carson embodies. They know the difference and it shows in the polls.
Is this an anomaly that should be considered to be an outlier on the Iowa political battlefield? In an undeniable answer: no!
Consider the equally decisive Quinnipiac poll, which also shows Carson toppling Trump from his former field leading political perch in Iowa. In September Trump led Carson in a 27 percent to 21 percent matchup. Now, based upon the poll’s findings, Carson has flipped the script on Trump and is now leading him 28 percent to Trump’s 20 percent, according to the Huffington Post.
As one digs down into the numbers, one also sees that again, Carson is showing growing voter strength among white Evangelical Christians with 36 percent support compared to 17 percent who support Trump. The #IAmaChristian movement, which Carson launched, was more than a simple gesture. Iowa Evangelicals clearly understood that.
Examine also another significant voting block in Iowa that is making a difference in the political fortunes of Carson and Trump. Just a month ago, the women’s vote was split equally between the two leading candidates. Now, in the Quinnipiac poll Carson is the hands-down choice, with 33 percent supporting him to Trump’s 13 percent. Not an outlier. This change of events is indicative of Carson’s increasing momentum among Iowans.
There is significance in these polls, because the Carson non-career political narrative is tied to his personal story as well, according to Ann Selzer, president of West Des Moines-based Selzer & Co.
Selzer, whose firm conducted the Bloomberg Politics/Des Moines Register Iowa Poll, commented, “His standing has improved in every way pollsters traditionally measure,” reported the Huffington Post. She also suggested that Iowa voters view Carson as someone who “approaches issues with common sense and with guidance from his faith in God.”
Christian faith and God may very well be back in the 2016 presidential election cycle for tens of millions of Christian Evangelicals. In the state that will cast the first 2016 nomination ballots, Carson may very well become the presidential standard bearer whose Christian faith, values and political outsider credentials will help defend and protect the future of Christianity. Carson and “One nation under God.” May be the winning Christian presidential formula to capture the White House.