Poll Shows Sorensen Is the Best Known and Most Favorable Democratic Candidate in the IL-17 Race

January 31, 2022

PHILADELPHIA — Today, 314 Action Fund released the results of new polling that shows former meteorologist Eric Sorensen establishing himself as the clear frontrunner ahead of the Democratic primary in Illinois’ seventeenth congressional district. For twenty years, Sorensen served as a trusted community leader in IL-17 as the district’s meteorologist at WREX Rockford and WQAD Quad Cities.

The poll, which was conducted by Public Policy Polling on behalf of 314 Action Fund and polled Democratic primary election voters across IL-17, shows Sorensen as the primary election frontrunner with a 2% lead on the second best performing candidate. Additionally, Sorensen performs the best among Democratic candidates in net favorability (+18%) and name recognition (+5% than the second best performing candidate). This poll also shows that 48% more Democratic primary voters would trust a meteorologist over an elected official to handle the climate crisis, with 54% of respondents saying they would trust their meteorologist to represent them in Congress and two of the top three issues for voters being science issues (climate change and COVID-19). The margin of error of this poll is +/- 4.1%, and the memo can be viewed here.

“In Illinois’ seventeenth congressional district and across the country, voters are making clear that they trust the scientists in their communities to serve as policy leaders,” said Shaughnessy Naughton, president and founder of 314 Action. “Combating the climate crisis and ending this pandemic continue to be on top of voters’ minds, and they are eager for STEM candidates to take the lead on addressing these challenges with evidence-based policies.”

314 Action recently launched a $10 million, cycle-long advocacy campaign focused on engaging voters on critical science issues — including climate change, health care, and the pandemic response — and holding anti-science public figures accountable. Additionally, 314 Action has engaged its base of six million grassroots members to push for pro-science legislation at the federal and state levels.


314 Action Fund is powered by a grassroots community of over six million people working to elect scientists, doctors, and STEM professionals who will use science and facts to address our most pressing issues like climate change and health care. In 2018 and 2020, we played a pivotal role in flipping the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, electing eleven Democratic scientists to federal office, as well as in helping over 100 statewide, state legislative, and municipal candidates win their races. In 2022, 314 Action Fund will continue working to elect science leaders and defeat climate deniers in Congress and legislatures across the country.