A new national poll released Monday shows former President Donald Trump leading Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis by 37 percentage points as the two lead the pack in the GOP primary race.
Trump received 54% support, compared to 17% given to DeSantis overall in the first New York Times/Siena College poll of the 2024 campaign. The poll was published less than six months before the first primary contest and before the first presidential debate, to be hosted by Fox News next month in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Of other 2024 White House GOP hopefuls, former Vice President Mike Pence, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley and Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., each were polling at 3%, while former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and tech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy each were polling at just 2% overall.
Even if Trump and DeSantis were to go head-to-head alone, the Florida governor would still lose by a two-to-one margin, 62% to 31%, according to the Times.
The poll of 1,329 registered voters nationwide, including an over-sample of 818 registered Republican voters, was conducted in English and Spanish on cellular and landline phones from July 23-27. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.67 percentage points for all registered voters and plus or minus 3.96 percentage points for the likely Republican primary electorate.
The latest Fox News national survey released at the end of June showed Trump had the support of 56% of GOP primary voters, with DeSantis trailing behind at 22%.
On June 13, Trump pleaded not guilty to 37 federal charges based on allegations that he illegally kept classified documents after leaving the White House, making him the first president to face federal indictment. Trump effectively gained ground in the polls following the indictment in that case.
The former president might face a second federal indictment in Washington, D.C., related to Justice Department Special Counsel Jack Smith’s probe into Jan. 6 and Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election results. Trump’s attorneys met with Smith’s investigators last week, but any indictment in that case remains to be seen as of Monday.
No other serious GOP challenger to Trump has emerged except DeSantis, whose campaign recently cut staff for a second time in an apparent restructuring before the fall.