8/3: Trump: Factor or Foolery?

While a majority of Republicans and Republican leaning independents nationally, 51%, considers businessman Donald Trump to be a distraction from the presidential primary process, two key groups within the GOP maintain a different view.  At least a majority of those who identify as “strong” Republicans or are Tea Party supporters say Trump is a serious presidential candidate.

These voters also differ in their impressions of Trump.  Unlike some of the other well-known candidates in the GOP field, Trump’s favorable rating among Republicans and Republican leaning independents, overall, is upside down. But, half of “strong” Republicans, 50%, and more than six in ten Tea Party supporters, 62%, have a positive impression of Trump.

And, when it comes to the GOP debates, many Republicans and Republican leaning independents assert all candidates seeking their party’s nomination should be allowed to participate.  Only about one in three says the candidates’ rankings in national polls should determine eligibility.

What do Republicans and Republican leaning independents want in their nominee?  Many favor a candidate who stands on conservative principles, and a plurality say they would definitely vote for a candidate who supports sending U.S. combat troops to Iraq and Syria to fight ISIS.  More than one in three say that, although they have reservations, they would back a candidate who supports raising the minimum wage.  However, pluralities of Republicans and Republican leaning independents would definitely not vote for someone who favors a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, supports gay marriage, or backs the removal of the confederate flag from government buildings.

On the Democratic side, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is well-liked among Democrats and Democratic leaning independents while Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont is unknown to half of these voters.  When it comes to what Democrats consider important in their party’s nominee, they divide about whether the priority should be nominating someone who will continue the policies of President Barack Obama or who will move the nation in a different direction.

“Donald Trump has been the political story for the summer and don’t expect him to disappear from the campaign stage anytime soon,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “While many see him as a distraction, party activists including strong Republicans and Tea Party identifiers view his candidacy seriously.”

Complete August 3, 2015 McClatchy-Marist Poll of the United States

Trump Commands Respect among Strong GOPers

Poll points:

  • 51% of Republicans and Republican leaning independents say Trump is a distraction from the presidential primary process.  44% describe him as a serious presidential candidate.
  • But, a majority of those who consider themselves to be “strong” Republicans, 52%, and 61% of Tea Party identifiers think Trump is a serious presidential contender.

Impressions of the GOP Candidates

Among the better-known Republican candidates, Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee are well-liked among Republicans and Republican leaning independents.  However, Trump, along with Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie have upside down ratings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More than Six in Ten want Inclusive GOP Debates

62% of Republicans and Republican leaning independents want all the candidates seeking the GOP nomination to be allowed to participate in the Republican debates.  About one in three, 34%, says participation should be determined by a candidate’s ranking in national polls.

GOP Favors Nominee who Stands on Republican Principles

More than six in ten Republicans and Republican leaning independents, 62%, believe it is more important for their party’s nominee to be someone who stands for conservative values.  35% say the priority is a candidate who can win the presidency.

Looking at some of the issues which impact the Republican vote, a plurality of Republicans and Republican leaning independents, 45%, say they would definitely vote for a candidate who supports sending U.S. combat troops to Iraq and Syria to fight ISIS.  However, pluralities of GOP voters report they definitely would not vote for a candidate who supports new immigration policies, including a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, 37%, is in favor of gay marriage, 37%, or supports the removal of the confederate flag from government buildings, 35%.  When it comes to raising the minimum wage, a plurality, 36%, says they would have reservations but would vote for a candidate who favors such legislation.

 

More than Seven in Ten View Clinton Positively

On the Democratic side, with a favorable rating of 72%, Hillary Clinton is well-liked among Democrats and Democratic leaning independents.  These voters also have a more positive than negative view of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, 34% to 16%.  However, half of Democrats and Democratic leaning independents, 50%, have either never heard of Senator Sanders or are unsure how to rate him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Democratic Divide

When it comes to their party’s nominee, Democrats and Democratic leaning independents divide about whether they think it is more important to have a candidate who will continue President Barack Obama’s policies, 45%, or nominate someone who will move the nation in a new direction, 46%. 

Marist Poll Methodology

Nature of the Sample and Complete Tables

Comments

One Response to “8/3: Trump: Factor or Foolery?”

  1. Jerry Whiting on September 5th, 2015 7:56 pm

    I am a registered Democrat, but Trump definitely has got my attention! I like that he says about must of his thoughts to take our nation in a new direction.

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