Ben Carson – Page 7 – Florida Politics

Donald Trump’s support fueled by negative feelings toward GOP establishment finds Monmouth University Poll

Donald Trump is holding on to his top spot in South Carolina, according to a new Monmouth University Poll.

Trump has the support of 35 percent of likely Republican primary voters in the Palmetto State. The poll found Ted Cruz captures second place with 19 percent, followed by Marco Rubio at 17 percent. John Kasich is at 9 percent, followed by Jeb Bush at 8 percent and Ben Carson at 7 percent.

The poll found there’s some room for movement come election day. Forty-two percent of respondents said they had decided on a candidate, while 31 percent said they had a strong preference.

“The overwhelmingly negative feelings of South Carolina Republicans toward the political establishment have helped Trump build upon the support he enjoyed since this summer,” said Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, in a statement.

Nearly two-thirds (63 percent) of South Carolina Republicans said they were dissatisfied with the Republican leaders in Congress. More than half (54 percent) of those polled said they thought someone outside of government should be elected.

The Monmouth University Poll was conducted from Feb. 14 through Feb. 16. The poll surveyed 400 likely South Carolina Republican primary voters and has a margin of error of 4.9 percent.

The South Carolina primary is Saturday.

Donald Trump still leads GOP field, Quinnipiac University poll finds

Donald Trump continues to be the favorite among Republican voters nationwide, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll.

Trump leads the Republican field with 39 percent, followed by Marco Rubio with 19 percent and Ted Cruz with 18 percent. John Kasich is at 6 percent, while Jeb Bush and Ben Carson are both at 4 percent.

“Reports of Donald Trump’s imminent demise as a candidate are clearly and greatly exaggerated,”  Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll, said in a statement. “Like a freight train barreling through signals with his horn on full blast, Trumps heads down the track towards a possible nomination.”

Sixty-two percent of Republican and Republican-leaning voters said they have a favorable opinion of the New York businessman. Rubio, a Florida Republican, is deemed the most likable, with 64 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning voters saying they had a favorable opinion.

According to the survey, 80 percent of Republicans said Trump has strong leadership qualities. But 60 percent of Republicans said he has the right kind of experience to be president. When asked that same question about Bush, 74 percent of Republicans said he had the right kind of experience to be president.

On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton lead Bernie Sanders, 44 percent to 42 percent. Eleven percent of Democrats and Democratic leaning voters said they were undecided.

Quinnipiac University conducted the national poll from Feb. 10 through Monday. The survey interviewed 602 Republicans with a margin of error of 4 percent and 563 Democrats with a margin of 4.1 percent.

Donald Trump holds commanding lead in SC, says new CNN poll

South Carolina Republicans think Donald Trump has the best chance of winning the general election this November, according to a new CNN/ORC International poll.

The survey found 53 percent of likely South Carolina Republican primary voters said Trump had the best chance of winning the general election in November. Nineteen percent of respondents said Ted Cruz had the best chance of winning the general election, while 16 percent said Marco Rubio.

Trump continues to hold a commanding lead in the polls, with 38 percent of likely Republican primary voters saying they were backing Trump in the primary. Cruz was in second with 22 percent, followed by Rubio at 14 percent and Jeb Bush at 10 percent. Ben Carson is at 6 percent, while John Kasich, who placed second in the New Hampshire primary, is at 4 percent.

Fifty-eight percent of Republicans said Trump would be the best person to handle the economy, while 53 percent said he was the best candidate to tackle illegal immigration.

On social issues, such as abortion and same-sex marriage, Cruz came out on top, with 28 percent of Republicans saying he would be the best candidate to deal with the issues.

In the Democratic race, Hillary Clinton leads Bernie Sanders in South Carolina, 56 percent to 38 percent.

The CNN/ORC International poll was conducted from Wednesday through Monday. Results among likely Republican voters have a margin of error of 5 percent; while the margin of error for results among Democratic primary voters is 6 percent.

Marco Rubio tied for 2nd in South Carolina, according to new poll

Marco Rubio is battling for second place in South Carolina, according to a new Public Policy Polling survey.

The poll found Rubio is tied for second with Ted Cruz with 18 percent support. Donald Trump continues to lead the Republican field with 35 percent. John Kasich is at 10 percent in the Palmetto State, followed by Jeb Bush and Ben Carson with 7 percent.

“Marco Rubio could be the surprise candidate on Saturday night,” said Dean Debnam, president of Public Policy Polling, in a statement Tuesday. “There’s a pretty clear top 3 and bottom 3 in South Carolina, and if supporters of the bottom 3 candidates decide to vote for someone who has a better chance Rubio is going to be the beneficiary.”

There’s room for movement in the standings. The survey found 29 percent of likely Republican primary voters polled said it was possible they would change their mind before Saturday’s Republican primary.

In a head-to-head match up between Cruz and Rubio, 47 percent of respondents said they would choose Rubio, while 37 percent said they’d pick Cruz. In a similar match-up that pits Trump and Rubio against one another, Trump leads 46 percent to 45 percent.

Public Policy Polling surveyed 897 likely Republican primary voters Sunday and Monday. The Republican poll has a margin of error of 3.3 percent.

On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton leads Bernie Sanders, 55 percent to 34 percent. Public Policy Polling surveyed 525 Democratic primary voters on Sunday and Monday. The Democratic poll has a margin of error of 4.3 percent.

The Republican primary is Saturday. South Carolina’s Democratic primary is Feb. 27.

Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton maintain sizable leads in national NBC News tracking poll

Republicans nationwide think Donald Trump will be their party’s nominee, according to a new NBC News|SurveyMonkey poll.

The survey found 56 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning voters believe Trump will be the eventual Republican nominee; while 22 percent said Ted Cruz would be the nominee. Ten percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning voters said Marco Rubio would be the nominee.

The New York businessman continues to lead the Republican field with 38 percent support, followed by Cruz at 18 percent and Rubio at 14 percent. Ben Carson is at 8 percent, while John Kasich is at 7 percent. Jeb Bush rounds out the field with 4 percent.

On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton leads Bernie Sanders, 50 percent to 40 percent. Sixty-six percent of Democrats and Democratic-leaning voters said they believe Clinton will be their party’s eventual nominee.

The NBC News|SurveyMonkey weekly tracking poll was conducted from Feb. 8 through Sunday. The online survey sampled 13,129 adults ages 18 and over; 11,417 of which said they were registered to vote.

Donald Trump maintains lead in South Carolina finds CBS News poll

Donald Trump maintains a large lead in South Carolina, according to a new CBS News Battleground Tracker poll.

According to the survey, Trump leads the Republican field with 42 percent support among likely Republican primary voters, followed by Ted Cruz in second with 20 percent. The poll found Marco Rubio has 15 percent, and John Kasich is at 9 percent. Jeb Bush and Ben Carson are at 6 percent.

The CBS News 2016 battleground tracker is a panel study based on internet interviews of registered voters in several battleground states. The most recent wave of interviews took place from Feb. 10 until Feb. 12 in South Carolina.

On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton leads Bernie Sanders, 59 percent to 40 percent, in South Carolina.

South Carolina’s Republican primary is Saturday. The state’s Democratic primary is Feb. 27.

Mitch Perry Report for 2.11.16 — Carly and Chris bid adieu to the circus

Chris Christie and Carly Fiorina have suspended their presidential campaigns.

This reporter had the chance to see the New Jersey governor (yes, that is the day job he’s pretty much blown off for months) a week ago in Keene, N.H. The fun part about that was how intimate it was: It was a small crowd (maybe too small, an indication of how he was going to perform on Tuesday), but other than a few opening remarks, the 90-minute event was all about him taking questions from the audience.

He was confident, humble, and forthright. When discussing health care, he admitted that he didn’t have a perfect solution, saying nobody did (yes, he wants to repeal the ACA).  He was funny at times, and kind. For those who wanted to see him blow up on someone, that didn’t happen, though he did give the cable networks a 10-second bite when he asked a man what the heck he was talking about (after the man went on for over two minutes without getting to his question).

I think he was a very good candidate, but he was toast before he got into the race. The BridgeGate scandal just stunk to high heaven, and even if he himself wasn’t personally involved, it happened on his watch with some of his top deputies. It reinforced the perceptions that he was a bully who went after his opponents, and it killed him.

However, depending on how this race ends up, his verbal takedown on Marco Rubio will go down in American political history. If Jeb Bush (or John Kasich) ends up somehow capturing the nomination, they’ll owe Christie big-time.

When I went to a GOP presidential cattle call in New Hampshire last April, there were two Republicans who impressed me purely with their presentation skills: Ted Cruz and Fiorina.

She really didn’t have much of a record to run on, frankly, but she was a good political athlete. Her tenure as a businesswoman was checkered, and she got mauled when running for U.S. Senate against Barbara Boxer in 2010. So why was she running?

Her verbal skills kept her in the game for awhile. And frankly, she got screwed by ABC last week when she wasn’t allowed into the Saint Anselm College debate in Manchester despite receiving more votes than Bush and Kasich in Iowa. That made no sense, and showed a level of disrespect to her campaign.

They’re both gone. Who’s taking odds on when Ben Carson departs?

In other news …

NARAL pro-choice America is blasting Marco Rubio for his stance on not believing abortion for women, even in the case of rape or incest.

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Rubio says he’s moving on to South Carolina, in the wake of his lousy week in New Hampshire.

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You better believe the Rubio camp is taking seriously the charges that he hasn’t accomplished enough to make him qualified to become the next president. Wednesday his campaign team added this post to their website.

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A proposal to remove Florida’s statue of a Confederate general in the U.S. Capitol advanced in a state House committee Wednesday.

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Jeb Bush wasted no time going after John Kasich, fresh off the Ohio governor’s second-place finish in New Hampshire.

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Hillsborough County PTC head Kyle Cockream says he wants the Legislature to reconsider a proposal in the House that would not mandate that Uber and Lyft drivers have Level 2 background checks, which require getting fingerprinted.

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Pam Bondi is psyched that the U.S. Supreme Court has put a checkdown on President Barack Obama‘s Clean Power Plan.

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And Kevin Beckner had an OK month of fundraising for his race for Hillsborough County Clerk of the Courts. Democratic incumbent Pat Frank? Not so much.

WMUR/CNN poll says nearly a third of NH Republicans still undecided

The final WMUR-CNN poll in New Hampshire shows that New York City businessman Donald Trump continues to hold a major lead and will be the likely victor Tuesday night.

The poll, conducted by the University of New Hampshire, shows Trump up with 31 percent support. Marco Rubio is second with 17 percent, and Ted Cruz is third with 14 percent.

Next up is John Kasich with 10 percent, Jeb Bush is fifth at 7 percent, Carly Fiorina is at 5 percent, Chris Christie has 4 percent and Ben Carson has 3 percent.

The poll shows that only 46 percent of likely Republican voters have definitely decided who they will vote for, while 24 percent are leaning toward a candidate and 31 percent are still trying to decide.

UNH polling director Andrew Smith says likely voters were asked who they would support if the election were today. The percentages for the candidates include those who are leaning toward supporting each candidate, even though they may not have made a final, definite decision on who they will vote for Tuesday.

As a result, 31 percent of Republican primary voters have not made a final decision about who they will support on primary day, while 7 percent of Republican voters could not say who they would vote for if the election were held today.

The poll also showed that independent voters are split on which ballot they will take on primary day, with 46 percent saying they will vote Republican and 47 percent saying they will vote Democratic.

The University of New Hampshire Survey Center of 326 New Hampshire residents who said they plan to vote in the Republican primary. It was conducted Thursday through Monday, and has a margin of error of plus or minus 5.2 percentage points.

Marco Rubio in 2nd place in Florida, new poll finds

Donald Trump leads in Florida, but Marco Rubio is in second place, according to a new poll from Florida Southern College.

The survey found Trump maintains the top spot in Florida among registered Republican voters with 27 percent. Rubio is in second with 20 percent, followed by Ted Cruz at 12 percent and Ben Carson at 6 percent. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush is fifth with 4 percent, according to the survey.

In a hypothetical general election match-up, the survey found Florida voters would pick Rubio over Hillary Clinton, 45 percent to 43 percent. In a head-to-head match up, Clinton would defeat Trump, 45  percent to 38 percent.

The Florida Southern College Poll also found that, among registered Florida voters, Bush would edge out Clinton, 45 percent to 42 percent.

On the Democratic side, Clinton leads Bernie Sanders 43 percent to 26 percent.

The survey was conducted by The Florida Southern College Center for Polling and Policy Research from Jan. 30 through Feb. 6. The survey polled 608 registered voters and has a margin of error of 4 percent.

Florida’s presidential preference primary is March 15.

Marco Rubio comes under withering criticism in Republican debate

Marco Rubio faced withering criticism of his readiness to be president and his policy depth in the final Republican debate before Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary, as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and other candidates launched an aggressive campaign to slow the Florida senator’s rise.

Rubio’s responded with an uneven performance on Saturday night that could hurt his bid to emerge as an alternative to Donald Trump and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. If anything, his showing gave new hope to Christie, Jeb Bush and Ohio Gov. John Kasich, all of whom need strong finishes in New Hampshire to keep their White House bids afloat.

Cruz, the Iowa caucuses winner, also took criticism at the debate for controversial political tactics, with one candidate disparaging him for having “Washington ethics” and being willing to test the campaign’s legal limits.

New Hampshire’s primary could further winnow an already shrinking GOP field or leave the primary muddled. Hard-fought, expensive and far-ranging, the campaign has become a fight for the future of the Republican Party, though the direction the GOP will ultimately take remains deeply uncertain.
Rubio, a first-term senator from Florida, has sought to appeal both to mainstream Republicans and those eager to upend the status quo. But his rivals, particularly Christie, have been blistering in their criticism of what they see as his slim qualifications to serve as commander-in-chief.

“You have not been involved in a consequential decision where you had to be held accountable,” Christie said. “You just simply haven’t.”

Christie has built his closing argument around his criticism of Rubio, and he kept up that approach on the debate stage. He accused the senator of being a candidate governed by talking points — then pounced when the senator played into his hands by repeating multiple times what appeared to be a planned response to criticisms about his qualifications.

“That’s what Washington, D.C., does,” Christie said. “The drive-by shot at the beginning with incorrect and incomplete information and then the memorized 25-second speech that is exactly what his advisers gave him.”

Rubio wavered in defending his decision to walk away from the sweeping immigration bill he originally backed in the Senate — perhaps the legislation he’s most closely associated with — and said he wouldn’t pursue similar legislation as president.

“We can’t get that legislation passed,” Rubio said of the bill that would have provided a pathway to citizenship for millions of people in the United States illegally. The senator found his footing later in the debate when outlining his call for more aggressive action to fight the Islamic State and emphasizing his anti-abortion stance.

Cruz was the victor in Iowa, triumphing over billionaire Trump by drawing heavily on the support of evangelical voters. But he’s faced criticism for messages his campaign sent to voters ahead of the caucuses saying rival Ben Carson — another favorite of religious conservatives — was dropping out and urging the retired neurosurgeon’s supporters to back him instead.

Cruz apologized for his campaign’s actions Saturday, but not before Carson jabbed him for having “Washington ethics.”

Those ethics, he said, “say if it’s legal, you do what you do to win.”

Trump was back on the debate stage after skipping the final contest before the Iowa caucuses. After spending the past several days disputing his second-place finish in Iowa, he sought to refocus on the core messages of his campaign, including blocking Muslims from coming to the U.S. and deporting all people in the country illegally, all while maintaining he has the temperament to serve as president.

“When I came out, I hit immigration, I hit it very hard,” Trump said. “Everybody said, ‘Oh, the temperament,’ because I talked about illegal immigration.”

Kasich, who has staked his White House hopes on New Hampshire, offered a more moderate view on immigration, though one that’s unpopular with many GOP primary voters. He said that if elected president, he would introduce legislation that would provide a pathway to legalization, though not citizenship, within his first 100 days in office.

The debate began shortly after North Korea defied international warnings and launched a long-range rocket that the United Nations and others call a cover for a banned test of technology for a missile that could strike the U.S. mainland.

Asked how he would respond to North Korea’s provocations, Bush said he would authorize a preemptive strike against such rockets if it was necessary to keep America safe. Cruz demurred, saying he wouldn’t speculate about how he’d handle the situation without a full intelligence briefing. And Trump said he’d rely on China to “quickly and surgically” handle North Korea.

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