‘Approval polling’ shows tight GOP presidential race between Donald Trump, Ron DeSantis
Social media favors the Florida Governor over the Mar-a-Lago retiree.

DeSantis Trump
'DeSantis is still quite popular and should not be written off.'

Though a swath of polling in recent months has shown Donald Trump well ahead of the 2024 Republican pack, one new national survey says the Primary race may be closer than some think.

Change Research asked 404 likely 2024 Republican Presidential Primary voters who they “approved” of in its most recent poll and it seems Florida’s Governor is close behind in that metric.

“Overall, 75% would vote for Trump on an approval voting ballot, while 67% would vote for Ron DeSantis — both far higher than any other likely candidate. These numbers make it clear that, even if Trump is currently more voters’ preferred candidate in a head-to-head matchup, DeSantis is still quite popular and should not be written off.”

Trump-exclusive voters make up 19% of the sample, with DeSantis-only types making up 12%.

“The majority of Republican Primary voters, 55%, would vote for both Trump AND DeSantis if given the choice. Only 14% of Republican Primary voters say they would not vote for either Trump or DeSantis,” the polling memo says.

Support past the big two candidates is diffuse, meanwhile: “Among the neither-DeSantis-nor-Trump voters, Nikki Haley has a slight lead, with 37% choosing her, 27% choosing Mike Pence, and 26% choosing Chris Christie.”

The polling suggests some cautions for DeSantis, meanwhile, including familiarity breeding contempt.

In November, “Change Research found that 74% of Republicans felt very favorably about DeSantis — 20 percentage points higher than the number who felt similarly about Trump. Now, only 42% of Republicans feel very favorably about the Florida Governor, while Trump’s numbers have shifted by only a few points.”

“Among all voters nationwide, DeSantis’s favorability has fallen from 44% in our November poll to 33% now, and the number viewing him very favorably has halved, to 19%. These numbers suggest vulnerability for DeSantis in a potential General Election,” the memo adds.

Though the new poll suggests DeSantis has a path, other metrics are less favorable. The Race to the White House delegate count, which is based on national and state polling, shows Trump with 1,777 delegates against 609 for DeSantis if the field doesn’t consolidate. In a consolidated field, Trump leads 1,599 to 855. 1,234 delegates are required to win.

Trump also leads in national polling on average, with 53% support to 23% for DeSantis.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


  • Dont Say FLA

    May 8, 2023 at 4:56 pm

    They’s a very wide chasm between one perhaps voting for Rhon Das Panties to be US President and one’s approving of Rhon DasPanties working hard at sinking Florida to the benefit of neighboring states’ tourism boards

  • PeterH

    May 8, 2023 at 5:00 pm

    Neither of the Republican top two presidential candidates will ever site in the Oval Office.

    Americans are tired of the hourly or daily GQP’s culture wars.

    Americans are exhausted with the daily mass shootings and blame Republican intransigence.

    • PeterH

      May 8, 2023 at 5:01 pm


    • Liberal Lunatic

      May 8, 2023 at 9:50 pm

      So you are saying Americans are happy with an open Southern Border where millions have entered since Joe Biden became President. You are also saying Americans are satisfied with high fuel prices, runaway inflation, out of control crime, and a completer disregard for the law. Are you telling me that’s what Americans want?

      • Your Daddy

        May 9, 2023 at 6:41 am

        Your numbers are incorrect, I know math is hard for the white Qristian but you did get a computer and we are all proud of your orogress.

        Gas was over $5 a gallon in 2003 so you blew that fact too.

        Bless your Qanon heart

        • Liberal Lunatic

          May 9, 2023 at 7:18 am

          Do you remember what it was in Jan 2021? I do and have pictures because spinners like yourself like to alter history.

          • Dont Say FLA

            May 9, 2023 at 8:14 am

            Gasoline was cheap AF because everybody had sat at home for 1.5 years trying not to die. If you want to give Defelonious Javina Trump credit for that, go right ahead. Proceed. Everybody knows he was behind the lab leak of Covid. That is how he knew it was a lab leak, duhhhh.

  • Earl Pitts American

    May 8, 2023 at 9:05 pm

    Good evening America,
    I, Earl Pitts “All Around Great Guy” American have already had a “come to Earl” meeting with the RNC and ordered them that I expect Desantis to be their selection for 2024.
    Relax America, everything is going to be OK. I, Earl Pitts American, got this.
    Thank You America,
    Earl Pitts American

    • Annie Jones

      May 8, 2023 at 9:28 pm

      Thank you Earl,
      After reading several of your infornative news releases I am becoming concerned my family are actually dook 4 brains leftists. Can you please help?
      Sometimes when I blow my nose I smell dook and I’m needing your guidance.
      Thank you Mr. PITTS
      Miss Anonyous Jones “Hot 4 Earl” Girl

  • You Suck, Jr

    May 8, 2023 at 9:19 pm

    404 likely voters? That’s a family reunion not a poll!

    You poor JV politicos

  • John Barron

    May 9, 2023 at 11:58 am

    Nothing tight here. Trump is going to slaughter, outright slaughter Meatball Ron.

Comments are closed.


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