Forty-six percent of the 292 Republican primary voters in the NBC News poll from April 14 to 18 said they would vote for Trump in the presidential Republican primary if it was held “today.” Trump’s huge support allows him to lead his closest opponent — Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis — by 15 points.
DeSantis, who has not announced if he is running for president in 2024, had 31 percent of the vote in the hypothetical poll. The remaining presidential Republican primary options were only in the single digits.
Former Vice President Mike Pence, who has also not announced if he is officially running in the race, garnered six percent support. Additionally, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, who both announced they are running, and Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC), who is exploring a 2024 bid, are all at three percent. Anti-woke businessman Vivek Ramaswamy is at two percent.
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However, when asked to pick a second choice, 33 percent said they would pick DeSantis, while 20 percent would pick Trump, and 14 percent would pick Haley.
Additionally, two-thirds of the Republican respondents said they supported Trump despite the investigations. Sixty-eight percent said they agreed with the statement that the investigations into the former president “are a politically motivated attempt to stop Trump” and that “no other candidate is like him.” Only 18 percent agreed that “it is important to nominate a candidate who will not be distracted and can beat Joe Biden.”
As DeSantis waits to announce if he is running, the Republican congressional delegation from Florida, where they both live, has already started to pick sides — giving a significant blow to the governor. Over half of the 20 lawmakers in DeSantis’s own backyard have announced their support for Trump. A handful of them announced their support after the governor visited with some GOP lawmakers in Washington, DC.
The NBC poll also found that Democrat President Joe Biden significantly trails a generic Republican ahead of his expected campaign launch this week. As reports have shown Biden could announce as soon as Tuesday, the poll showed that only 41 percent of respondents would “probably” or “definitely” vote for him in November 2024, compared to the 47 percent who said they would “probably” or “definitely” vote for the GOP nominee.
The poll was conducted by Hart Research Associates/Public Opinion Strategies with 800 registered voters from April 14 to April 18 and saw a 3.46 percent margin of error. The GOP primary questions had 292 Republican primary voter respondents and had a 5.99 percent margin of error.
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