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Trump leads GOP primary with DeSantis as runner-up: poll

Trump won a hypothetical race against Biden by 5% and against Harris by 6%, the poll showed.

Published: December 18, 2022 9:02am

Updated: December 18, 2022 9:34am

Former President Donald Trump is the top choice for the 2024 Republican presidential primary, with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis coming in as the runner-up, according to a new poll.

The Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll released Friday found that 48% of GOP voters said they would support Trump if the primary were held today, while 25% said they would vote for DeSantis. If Trump does not run in 2024, 48% of GOP voters said they would support DeSantis, with former Vice President Mike Pence as the runner-up with 15% support.

Among GOP voters, if given the choice in the primaries between only Trump or DeSantis, 55% said they would vote for Trump and 45% said they would support DeSantis. However, when including independent voters in the hypothetical GOP primary between only DeSantis and Trump, the Florida governor comes in at 52% to the former president's 48%.

Democratic voters, meanwhile, are somewhat less unanimous in their presidential primary pick. The poll showed that 36% of Democrats would vote for President Joe Biden in the 2024 primaries, while 10% would vote for Vice President Kamala Harris. Other notable contenders are Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) at 7%, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also at 7%, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg at 6%, and although she is not old enough to run, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is coming in at 5%.

Trump could win against the top two possible Democratic nominees. The former president won a hypothetical race against Biden by 5% and against Harris by 6%, the poll showed. 

DeSantis would also defeat both Democratic front-runner candidates, albeit by not as large of a margin as Trump, with the poll showing him ahead of Biden by 4% and ahead of Harris by 5%.

The Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll was conducted from Dec. 14-15 with 1,851 registered voters. 

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