Poll: Ron DeSantis ahead of Donald Trump in early states in ranked choice voting formula
Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks at the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition’s fall banquet. Photo via AP.

'DeSantis earns a majority faster than Trump and comes out on top, 51-49%.'

If Republican Presidential Primaries embraced a ranked choice format, Ron DeSantis would be ahead of Donald Trump in key early states.

That’s one takeaway from a WPA Intelligence and FairVote national poll of 801 likely Republican Presidential Primary voters on Sept. 28-30, conducted after last week’s GOP debate in California.

Trump has 48% support overall nationally, putting him 35 points ahead of DeSantis and besting Nikki Haley 62% to 38%. But when a ranked choice model is applied nationally, it’s a different story when it comes to the first states on the 2024 calendar: Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, South Carolina, Michigan, Missouri and North Dakota.

“In an RCV tabulation, Ron DeSantis earns a majority faster than Trump and comes out on top, 51-49%,” the pollsters note.

That 2-point lead is within the poll’s margin of error of +/- 4.5 percentage points, but suggests that despite Trump’s expanding lead in many national polls, DeSantis still resonates with voters — particularly those who will hold disproportionate sway in early contests. However, that doesn’t mean he’s competitive in polling of Primaries and caucuses as they actually are.

“In the early state sample, Donald Trump is also a clear front-runner with 43% of voters’ first choices. Ron DeSantis finishes second, with 16% of voters’ first choices. In our ranked choice voting tabulation, the results are much different. DeSantis consolidates non-Trump voters, and “comes from behind” to defeat Trump (though the final result is within the margin of error). DeSantis is clearly a more popular backup choice than Trump.”

It bears mentioning that DeSantis is not the only candidate who looks better in a ranked choice voting context than in typical horse race polls.

“Four candidates are real rivals to Trump, but polling shows that DeSantis is the only candidate who beats Trump head-to-head. Along with DeSantis, Nikki Haley, Vivek Ramaswamy, and Chris Christie are all within the margin of error during the round-by-round count, suggesting any of them could make it to the final round in an RCV contest. In other words, the field could consolidate around any of these contenders.”

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


  • Biscuit

    October 6, 2023 at 12:32 pm

    It’s a shame this will only serve to encourage the arsehole Governor.
    Ranked choice, stupid humans.

  • Biscuit

    October 6, 2023 at 12:38 pm

    Newsflash. GOP voters polled in ranked choice scenario have revealed that they, the voters, are 51% idiots, and 49% morons.
    Stupid human voters.

    • Frank Peters

      October 7, 2023 at 6:13 pm

      You must be one of those pedophile transgender drag queen’s that DeSantis threw out of Florida and back to your 💩 blue state.

  • Earl Pitts "Dook 4 Brains Leftist/RINO Re-Education Expert" American

    October 6, 2023 at 12:44 pm

    Good afternoon America,
    Just more proof that you doubting Thomases should have relied more on what I, Earl Pitts American, have been telling you all along.
    Well the above artical should be seen as proof positive that America will have Desantis as President for the next 8 glorious years.
    All you Dook 4 Brains Leftist/RINO’s can consider this email corrispondance as completing your Re-Education requirement for this day.
    CLASS DISMISSED everyone have a nice weekend and remember to report back for class Monday morning at 8:00 sharp! And you, little Rickey Whiticker congrats on winning my contrarian poster of the week award!!!!
    Weekend Homework:
    There will be a quiz Monday morning on all my Saturday and Sunday knowledge drop posts of great wisdom. Read Them!!!
    Pitts Out

    • Rick Whitaker

      October 6, 2023 at 1:11 pm

      what a childish punk you are. as i have told you before, you’re not funny, witty, or anything you must think you are. it’s not sad, it’s disgusting. now that i have exposed you through the Wikipedia listing for earl pitts,aka,gary burbank, aka, and your real birth name billy purser interested people can find you through tax records or many other methods you should be more civil instead of all that sexual perversion you use in an attempt to be amusing or whatever.. go on with your 82 year old dirty old man self. i guess this article gets your hopes up about your boy hero desantis. yeah, go with it.at your advanced age, you need hope. maybe you will live until november 2024, maybe not.

      • Earl Pitts "Dook 4 Brains Leftist/RINO Re-Education Expert" American

        October 6, 2023 at 3:22 pm

        Thanks little Rickey,
        You’ve been a good Son thru the years.
        Up until you disowned the Pitts family and took up with those crazy Whitakers down the street.
        I know you and those crazy Whitakers only abuse me to try and frighten me into putting you back in my last will and testiment.
        But I still love you after all these years of torment, Little Rickey.
        But no, Little Rickey, I am leaving the entire Pitts Family fourtune along with my extensive land and Hotel holdings in all 50 states, Europe, and New Zeeland to my newest hot pole dancer girl friend Temika, or as I affectionatly call her; my Beloved Meek Meek.
        I do own outright a Buckey’s in Austin TX which I am going to give to you, right now, if you move to Austin, a Dook 4 Brains Leftist City, and take all of those annoying Whitakers from down the street with you and work amoungst your beloved Dook 4 Brains people at The Buckey’s for the rest of your life, and never return to my namesake town here in Earlville Kansas ever again.
        Thank you in advance and enjoy your remaining years with your Dook 4 Brains Lefty’s at The Austin TX Buckey’s,
        Dad Pitts American
        Have an Earl Pitts American Day Little Rickey Pitts American

  • My Take

    October 6, 2023 at 1:28 pm

    Well, admittedly, DeSScamus hasn’t commited outright treason . . . that we know of . . . yet.

  • My Take

    October 6, 2023 at 6:08 pm

    More like “rank” choice.

  • Maybe rank choice isn’t such a good idea after all

    October 8, 2023 at 10:27 am

    Since DeSantis and his legislative puppies have forbidden rank choice voting here in Florida it seems just to know that’s the only way he could ever be nominated.

    • MH/Duuuval

      October 8, 2023 at 10:53 pm

      Ranked choice voting may become the new fav of Red Fla. voters, especially as previous favorite mail ballots are now frowned on.

  • Richard Russell

    October 9, 2023 at 1:40 pm

    Where did you find those “Rank” voters? Could “rank” be those who smell of something one would refer to as emitting a “rank” odor? If Trump does not win the Presidency in 2024, all your polls will mean nothing to the eventual winner: Xi Jinping!

Comments are closed.


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