A new poll from Trump pollster McLaughlin & Associates finds the former president leading Florida Governor Ron DeSantis by nearly 40 percentage points as the chase for the GOP presidential nomination heats up.
The poll shows Trump at 54 percent, and DeSantis with 16 percent support, as the Florida governor kicks off his campaign for the White House.
DeSantis has seen his support in the McLaughlin poll cut in half since January, when 31 percent of Republican primary voters said they would vote for him. Meanwhile, Trump’s numbers have risen 11 percentage points — from 43 percent support in January, according to the poll.
The survey of 1,000 likely voters, conducted May 17-24, shows 7 percent of respondents say they would vote for former Vice President Mike Pence, followed by Ohio businessman and political outsider Vivek Ramaswamy (4 percent) and former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley (3 percent). U.S. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT), who has not said he is pursuing a return to the presidential campaign trail, also garnered 3 percent support. Newly declared Republican presidential candidate U.S. Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina is at 2 percent.
Whittled down to just two Republican Party nominee contestants, 69 percent of likely Republican voters said they would vote for Trump, while 30 percent said DeSantis.
The gap between the frontrunner and his closest rival is similar in other recent polls. Liberal prosecutor-led indictments and civil trial verdicts against Trump seem to only have solidified his position as the Republican to beat in the 2024 nomination chase.
The RealClearPolitics latest average of national Republican Primary polls shows Trump (55.5 percent), leading DeSantis (21.1 percent) by 34.4 percent.
Just 24 percent of likely Democrat voters in the McLaughlin poll say they would cast a ballot for President Joe Biden in a field of contestants. Biden announced his re-election bid last month. Former First Lady Michelle Obama, who is not running, comes in second at 22 percent. Vice President Kamala Harris received just 4 percent support in the poll. Declared Democrat candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr., is supported by 4 percent of likely voters, and candidate Marianne Williamson is polling at 1 percent.
Biden’s approval ratings continue to fall. The poll finds 56 percent of respondents hold an unfavorable view of the president, with 41 percent saying they have a favorable opinion. Biden’s approval rating is 41 percent, with 56 percent disapproving.
Read the new poll:
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M.D. Kittle is the National Political Editor for The Star News Network.
Photo “Gov. Ron DeSantis” by Gage Skidmore CC BY 2.0 and “President Donald Trump” by The White House.
DeSantis for 2028??