Home Politics The 2016 Presidential Polls Are Leaning Toward…

The 2016 Presidential Polls Are Leaning Toward…

U.S. Secretary of State Clinton delivers a speech at Georgetown University in Washington

We are more than a year away but 2016 will be here before we know it.  Get ready because you know we will soon be bombarded with news about high-priced fundraisers, slanderous ads, rousing speeches, and heated debates. Yes, it is almost that time for the Presidential election season to make its way to the forefront. According to a recent poll conducted by the Saint Leo University Polling Institute, a likely candidate is leading in the polls.

A year before the 2016 presidential nomination contests formally begin, Hillary Clinton continues to hold substantial leads over all prospective challengers, both for the Democratic presidential nomination and in prospective general election matchups. This is according to a new national survey conducted by the Saint Leo University Polling Institute.

A full 70 percent of likely voter Democrats name Clinton as their first choice for nominee. Vice President Joe Biden, at 8 percent, comes in second. A dozen other prospective Democratic candidates get trace mentions.

“Clinton is still in strong shape nationwide with strong polling numbers against fellow Democrats in the primary and against her presumptive Republican challengers,” said Frank Orlando, instructor of political science at Saint Leo University. “It’s important to note that her opponents have not started attacking her, but once we see the campaign truly start, her polling numbers will fade and favorability decline. Still, according to our numbers, she is starting from such a position of strength that it will be quite a task to topple her given the current political climate.”

The Republican nomination remains up for grabs, however, with no candidate breaking away from the pack of potential candidates. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (15 percent) and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush (13 percent) are the names mentioned most often. U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida (8 percent), U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas (7), U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (7) of Kentucky, and U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin (7) have relatively small national followings at this point.

Chris Christie has edged ahead of Jeb Bush in our nationwide polling, showing that the negative publicity that he absorbed due to ‘Bridgegate’ has largely subsided,” said Orlando. “Despite his lead, he is viewed less favorably by Republicans than Jeb Bush. Should Bush run, he can count on a broad base of support, with a quarter of voters supporting him as their first or second choice. If Bush decides not to run, the greatest beneficiary would seem to be Marco Rubio, not just in Florida, but nationally as well,” remarked Orlando.

In general election matchups, Clinton leads all prospective Republican nominees by wide margins. If the election were held today, Clinton tops Christie, 49-34 percent; Bush, 53-33 percent; Rubio, 53-30 percent; Paul, 54-30 percent; and Cruz, 54-27 percent.

Of eight national political figures tested, only Clinton had a net positive favorability rating among the national sample of likely voters, at 56 percent favorable, 39 percent unfavorable (+17). Rubio’s rating is 35/35 (even); Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, 18/19 (-1); Bush, 40/43 (-3); Biden, 45/48 (-3); Christie, 40/47 (-7); Paul, 34/43 (-9); and Cruz, 28/42 (-14).

Among likely Republican voters, prospective Republican presidential candidates are doing considerably better. Bush is best regarded, with a favorability rating of 68/22 (+46). Rubio’s rating is 60/17 (+43); Christie, 55/37 (+18); Paul, 57/23 (+18); and Cruz, 49/25 (+24).

A year before the 2016 presidential nomination contests formally begin, Hillary Clinton continues to hold substantial leads over all prospective challengers, both for the Democratic presidential nomination and in prospective general election matchups. This is according to a new national survey conducted by the Saint Leo University Polling Institute.

A full 70 percent of likely voter Democrats name Clinton as their first choice for nominee. Vice President Joe Biden, at 8 percent, comes in second. A dozen other prospective Democratic candidates get trace mentions.

“Clinton is still in strong shape nationwide with strong polling numbers against fellow Democrats in the primary and against her presumptive Republican challengers,” said Frank Orlando, instructor of political science at Saint Leo University. “It’s important to note that her opponents have not started attacking her, but once we see the campaign truly start, her polling numbers will fade and favorability decline. Still, according to our numbers, she is starting from such a position of strength that it will be quite a task to topple her given the current political climate.”

The Republican nomination remains up for grabs, however, with no candidate breaking away from the pack of potential candidates. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (15 percent) and former Florida Governor Jeb Bush (13 percent) are the names mentioned most often. U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida (8 percent), U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas (7), U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (7) of Kentucky, and U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin (7) have relatively small national followings at this point.

Chris Christie has edged ahead of Jeb Bush in our nationwide polling, showing that the negative publicity that he absorbed due to ‘Bridgegate’ has largely subsided,” said Orlando. “Despite his lead, he is viewed less favorably by Republicans than Jeb Bush. Should Bush run, he can count on a broad base of support, with a quarter of voters supporting him as their first or second choice. If Bush decides not to run, the greatest beneficiary would seem to be Marco Rubio, not just in Florida, but nationally as well,” remarked Orlando.

In general election matchups, Clinton leads all prospective Republican nominees by wide margins. If the election were held today, Clinton tops Christie, 49-34 percent; Bush, 53-33 percent; Rubio, 53-30 percent; Paul, 54-30 percent; and Cruz, 54-27 percent.

Of eight national political figures tested, only Clinton had a net positive favorability rating among the national sample of likely voters, at 56 percent favorable, 39 percent unfavorable (+17). Rubio’s rating is 35/35 (even); Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, 18/19 (-1); Bush, 40/43 (-3); Biden, 45/48 (-3); Christie, 40/47 (-7); Paul, 34/43 (-9); and Cruz, 28/42 (-14).

Among likely Republican voters, prospective Republican presidential candidates are doing considerably better. Bush is best regarded, with a favorability rating of 68/22 (+46). Rubio’s rating is 60/17 (+43); Christie, 55/37 (+18); Paul, 57/23 (+18); and Cruz, 49/25 (+24).

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