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Indictment Coming? Who Cares: Trump Dominates GOP 2024 Race

Trump’s support now over 50 percent in GOP race, new poll finds: Indictment or no indictment, Donald Trump has widened his lead in the Republican presidential contest, a new Morning Consult poll found 

Donald Trump Is Dominating? 

Former President Donald Trump may be in the news over his pending indictment. But when it comes to the Republican presidential race, he’s doing better than ever. 

According to a new Morning Consult poll released Tuesday, Trump has widened his lead, and now polls more than 50 percent support in the Republican race. 

The poll states that among both declared and undeclared candidates, Trump has 54 percent support, more than double the support of the second-place candidate, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Former Vice President Mike Pence is third with 7 percent, followed by former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley with 4 percent and former Rep. Liz Cheney with 3 percent. 

Several other potential candidates, including Gov. Greg Abbott, Gov. Kristi Noam, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Gov. Glenn Youngkin, Sen. Tim Scott, and businessman Vivek Ramaswamy, are listed at 1 percent each. 

Of those candidates, only Trump, Haley, and Ramaswamy have declared that they are running. 

“As Trump awaits potential indictment on charges related to a 2016 hush money scheme with adult-film star Stormy Daniels, he has posted one of his largest polling leads in the 2024 Republican primary,” the release for the Morning Consult poll said. 

The polling outfit added that the 26 percent is a tie for the longest showing DeSantis has posted since the tracking began late last year. 

Also struggling in the poll is former Vice President Pence. His favorability rating, Morning Consult said, “declined  from 60% to 55% during a week that featured news coverage of his condemnation of Trump’s behavior surrounding the Jan. 6 Capitol attack.”

Morning Consult also found that of those who favor Trump, 46 percent named DeSantis as their second choice, 17 percent named Pence, 6 percent picked Haley, and another 17 percent said: “don’t know/no opinion.” Among DeSantis backers, 43 percent have Trump as their first choice, 16 percent picked Pence, 15 percent said Haley, and 5 percent chose Scott. 

The usual caveats to these sorts of poll results apply: It remains very, very early in the race, most of the candidates haven’t even begun running yet, and it remains to be seen what the effect will be from a Trump indictment, and possibly more than one of them. 

Trump vs. DeSantis 

Trump and DeSantis, however, are sniping at each other as if they were in the middle of a hard-fought race. After several months of Trump ripping the Florida governor on a daily basis on his Truth Social app, and DeSantis mostly not responding, the governor earlier this week addressed the potential indictment in New York, ripping the “Soros-funded” district attorney Alvin Bragg but at the same time going out of his way to mention “porn star hush money payments.” Trump responded by insinuating, on social media, that DeSantis could someday face allegations of his own misconduct. 

DeSantis’ comment that “look- I don’t know what goes into paying hush money to a porn star to secure silence over some type of alleged affair, I can’t speak to that” landed with a thud in Trump world. ‘MAGA’ appeared to be hoping for more of a direct defense of Trump, a declaration that he’s innocent, or perhaps a pledge that he would use his powers as governor to block any Trump arrest, was left disappointed by what DeSantis said. 

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“So DeSantis thinks that Dems weaponizing the law to indict President Trump is a ‘manufactured circus’ & isn’t a ‘real issue,’” the former president’s son, Donald Trump Jr., said on Twitter. “Pure weakness. Now we know why he was silent all weekend. He’s totally owned by Karl Rove, Paul Ryan & his billionaire donors. 100% Controlled Opposition.”

Others, such as Trump spokesperson Liz Harrington, were upset that DeSantis did not say Trump’s name during his remarks. 

Expertise and Experience

 Stephen Silver is a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive. He is an award-winning journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.



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