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  Poll shows fragmented support in [Rep] Evans' [IL-17] district
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Last EditedArmyDem  Apr 26, 2006 07:50pm
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News DateThursday, April 27, 2006 01:00:00 AM UTC0:0
DescriptionBy TORY BRECHT -- Lee News Service Writer

ROCK ISLAND - If the search to find a replacement candidate for the re­;tiring Lane Evans were a traditional primary, his hand-picked and county chairman-endorsed potential successor, Phil Hare, likely would come in last, ac­;cord­;ing to polling data compiled by Personal Marketing Re­;search of Davenport, Iowa.

The poll was commissioned and paid for by the 17th District State Central Committee office, headed by Don Johnston. The phone poll conducted recently questioned 316 Democrats from throughout the district who had voted in the last two primaries. They were asked first whether they knew Evans was retiring and was to be replaced by a vote of precinct committeemen. They then were read a list of potential replacement candidates and asked for whom they would vote.

Rock Island Mayor Mark Schwiebert scored the highest of candidates who are still actively seeking the seat, with 11 percent. State Rep. Mike Boland of East Moline and state Sen. John Sullivan of Rushville each received 9 percent. Hare received 6 percent. Several other candidates scored between 5 percent and 3 percent. The response that drew the largest percentage was "don't know" with 49 percent.

"That shows that if this were a primary, there would be a lot of opportunity to pick up votes," Johnston said. "The idea was to see what the landscape was if this were a primary."

Johnston conceded that the poll numbers were a bit biased toward Rock Island County candidates, as more than one-third of the respondents lived in the county. That made Sullivan's showing impressive, he said.
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