Poll: Fong commands lead in 20th Congressional battle. Boudreaux, Wood follow behind.

The Kern County lawmaker is leading the pack to succeed ex-Speaker Kevin McCarthy, with two key contenders trailing behind him.

Asm. Vince Fong (R–Bakersfield) is leading the pack to replace Speaker Emeritus Kevin McCarthy in 20th Congressional District . 

A new poll from Inside California Politics and Emerson College shows Fong in front by a wide margin, although a plurality of voters still remain undecided. 


The big picture: According to the poll, Fong leads with 27 percent of likely voters, with Tulare County Sheriff Mike Boudreaux, a fellow Republican, and Democrat Marisa Wood tied for second at 11 percent each. 

  • Democrat Andy Morales is in the fourth position at eight percent, with Fresno businessman Kyle Kirkland, a Republican, trailing behind at four percent. 
  • Republican David Giglio was the only other candidate to crack one percent, as he is at 1.7 percent. 
  • A total of 35 percent of voters remain undecided, according to the poll. 

Go deeper: While Fong is on the ballot after a ruling from a Sacramento County judge late last year, California Secretary of State Shirley Weber has appealed the ruling, leaving the door open for him to be disqualified from the ballot. 

  • Half of the voters polled oppose Weber’s effort to remove Fong, while 31 percent support her. 
  • If Fong is removed, 33 percent of voters would support Boudreaux while 13 percent would vote for Kirkland. 

What they’re saying: “Fong’s support is 17 points higher among men than women, 36 percent to 19 percent,” said Spencer Kimball, Executive Director of Emerson College Polling. “Forty-six percent of women are undecided compared to 24 percent of men. Women voters are more supportive than men of Wood, 13 percent to eight percent.” 

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