Former President Donald Trump is losing his grip on the Republican party, according to a new Suffolk University/USA Today poll.
The poll, released Tuesday, Dec. 13, found that among registered voters nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of Republicans and independents who identified as either conservative or very conservative wanted Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to run for president.
Of those same voters, 56 percent said they prefer DeSantis over Trump.
“There’s a new Republican sheriff in town,” said David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center.
“DeSantis outpolls Trump not only among the general electorate, but also among these Republican-leaning voters who have been the former president’s base.
“Republicans and conservative independents increasingly want Trumpism without Trump.”
Paleologos said the poll results only pertain to a Trump-DeSantis matchup.
“Add in a number of other Republican presidential candidates who would divide the anti-Trump vote and you have a recipe for a repeat of the 2016 Republican caucuses and primaries, when Trump outlasted the rest of the divided field,” he said.
In a hypothetical matchup between DeSantis and President Joe Biden, DeSantis wins 47 to 43 percent among all voters, the poll found, with 7 percent undecided, 2 percent saying they would vote for someone else, 1 percent saying they wouldn’t vote, and 1 percent refusing to answer.
The poll found that Biden would easily defeat Trump should the two go head to head again, by 47 to 40 percent among all voters.
Five percent chose someone else, 4 percent said they would not vote, another 4 percent were undecided, and 1 percent refused a response.
Trump’s approval rating is now at just 30 percent, compared to 46 percent for Biden, the poll found.
Asked whether Trump and Biden should run again in 2024, neither candidate fared well. Sixty-nine percent said Trump should not run again, compared to just 25 percent who said he should.
Over 67 percent did not want to see Biden on the ballot again, compared to just 23 percent who said he should run.
The Suffolk University/USA Today poll was conducted between Dec. 7 and Dec. 11 with 1,000 voters using cell phone and landline phones. The margin of error is +/- 3.1 percentage points.
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