Poll: Trump leads Elizabeth Warren in Iowa by four -- until Howard Schultz enters the picture

If you thought the left hated Schultz before, just wait. They’ll be ready to string him up once this makes the rounds.

That’s from Emerson but it’s not the only poll lately showing that the chatterati is correct in suspecting that Schultz would pull more voters from the Democratic nominee than from Trump. Change Research tested Trump in hypothetical match-ups against five Democratic contenders (Biden, Warren, Harris, Sanders, O’Rourke) and found that in four of the five cases the Democrat leads him head-to-head — but trails narrowly once Schultz is included in the options. Hoo boy.

The same poll, by the way, found Schultz’s favorable rating at 4/40. Four percent favorable. Last night’s trash Super Bowl would get a better favorability rating than that. Even if you exclude Pats fans from the sample.

But wait. It gets worse for Dems. New from Morning Consult:

The POLITICO/Morning Consult poll shows anti-Trump and Democratic voters are more open to supporting third-party candidates than Republicans are — evidence supporting the prominent Democrats who spent the last week warning that a credible, well-funded independent candidate could improve President Donald Trump’s chances of reelection.

While only 26 percent of voters who approve of Trump’s job performance as president said they were very or somewhat likely to consider a third-party candidate, a larger percentage of Trump disapprovers, 41 percent, said they would consider voting for an independent. By party, nearly a third of Democrats, 31 percent, say they would consider a third-party candidate, compared with 25 percent of Republicans who indicated they would consider voting for someone other than the two major-party nominees.

There are two ways leftists could react to this. One: Consider that, perhaps, the Democratic Party’s shrinking but still potentially decisive moderate wing is underserved by the current leadership and that there might be a better message for next November than “socialism is the answer.” Two: Continue to drag Schultz relentlessly on social media in hopes of driving him from the race. Those two approaches aren’t mutually exclusive. And yet I feel like only one will be tried.

Trump leads in seven out of eight hypothetical races in Emerson’s poll of Iowa, which sounds like good news until you look at the margins. His largest margin against any serious Democratic contender is six points but he won Iowa three years ago against Hillary Clinton by 10. He’s starting out there a bit weaker than he was in 2016, although maybe that’s because most of the Democrats in the mix are still unknown and are being viewed through rose-colored glasses as generic Trump alternatives at the moment. The one Dem who already leads him head to head in Iowa is Uncle Joe, who’s reportedly close to officially jumping in but hasn’t convinced himself yet to pull the trigger. Much has been written about Biden’s various vulnerabilities in a Democratic primary — criminal justice and #MeToo foremost among them — but here’s a detail from the Emerson poll that suggests age may be a bigger problem than we expect:

Biden will turn 77(!) a few months before the Iowa caucuses. Currently 71 percent of Democratic caucusgoers say “over 75” is too old, including 70 percent of self-identified Biden supporters. How many Iowans who are high on Biden right now have no idea how old he is and are destined to have serious second thoughts once they find out?

Oh, almost forgot: Emerson also has Trump leading John Kasich in a hypothetical Republican caucus by a cool 80 points, 90/10. So, yeah, that ain’t happening.