January 30, 2023

Trump beats DeSantis in potential GOP primary race, new poll finds

Former President Trump has a 17-point lead over Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R), according to a new poll.

A Morning advisory vote A poll of Republican primary voters released Wednesday showed Trump at 48 percent and DeSantis at 31 percent. Trump’s lead has diverged from some polls since the November midterm elections, which have shown DeSantis closing the gap with Trump or in some cases taking the lead.

Former Vice President Mike Pence was third with 8 percent, and former Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) was third with 3 percent. Former US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) both got 2 percent.

Morning Consult polls last month put Trump at 45 to 50 percent, while DeSantis has hovered around 30 percent.

Among Trump voters in recent polls, DeSantis is a comfortable second choice, with 44 percent backing the Florida governor. 20 percent would support Pence, and 7 percent would support Cruz.

About a third of DeSantis supporters would vote for Trump as their second choice, while 14 percent would back Pence and 13 percent would back Haley.

Pollsters have found that Trump’s favorable rating among Republican primary voters has improved over the past month, with 77 percent having a favorable view of him. Trump’s net favorability rating, calculated by subtracting the percentage who view him favorably from the percentage who view him unfavorably, surpassed 50 percent for the first time in nearly a month.

7 in 10 likely voters have a favorable view of DeSantis.

DeSantis has an advantage among potential voters who view each of them unfavorably. Only 11 percent said they disapproved of DeSantis, and 23 percent said they disapproved of Trump.

Polls show DeSantis would do marginally better than Trump in a hypothetical general election contest against President Biden. DeSantis leads Biden by 3 points, 44 percent to 41 percent, and Biden leads Trump by 3 points, 43 percent to 40 percent.

Pollsters say two-thirds or more of respondents said they haven’t heard anything recently about other potential candidates.

Trump became the first major Republican candidate to jump into the race in November, but several prominent Republicans have indicated they are considering running. DeSantis has not made a public announcement, but has been the subject of intense speculation surrounding his presidential aspirations.

The poll was conducted Jan. 13-15 among 829 likely Republican primary voters. The margin of error was 4 percentage points.