For Donald trump, the Republican front runner, New Hampshire might be convincing as it seems. A fascinating new survey of likely primary voters by the University of New Hampshire has found that Trump’s huge poll lead may be more vulnerable than ever thought. Interestingly, the man to watch for a strong second-place showing may be Florida Sen. Marco Rubio.
The battle of Iowa and N.H
All eyes recently have been turned away from New Hampshire to Iowa whose primary takes place Feb. 1, while that of N.H comes up on Feb 9. It was in Iowa that Sarah Palin suddenly leapt into the fray by endorsing Trump, and where Trump is battling closely with his chief Tea Party rival for the nomination, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. If the primary were held tomorrow, likely voters in the state told pollsters that 34% of Republicans would vote for Trump, against just 14% for Ted Cruz, 10% apiece for Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush, and small amounts for various other candidates.
Voters yet to decide where the swing goes
After all the publicity and all the debates embarked upon by all the candidates, just 31% of likely voters say they have definitely decided on a candidate. A remarkable 43% still say they aren’t even leaning toward somebody — they’re undecided. And although Trump so far has the most positive supporters, he also has by far the most enemies. An astonishing 30% of Republicans say they will definitely not vote for Trump “under any circumstances” compared with just 4% for Cruz and Rubio. According to marketwatch, 40% of Republicans have a negative opinion of Trump, much higher than those for Rubio or Cruz.
Cruz, Rubio closing the gap in New Hampshire
Furthermore, Cruz and Rubio get more than twice as many second preferences as Trump, something that may become significant if a few candidates emerge from the pack in the final days. Cruz and Rubio might eventually pose a threat to the confidence of Trump in Iowa and New Hampshire.