A Fox News host and an NBC reality television star are tied as the top choices for the Republican presidential nomination in West Virginia, according to a PPP poll of registered voters released on Tuesday.
In the survey, Trump and Huckabee easily led the rest of the GOP field at 24% each. Sarah Palin placed third with 13%, followed by Mitt Romney (11%) and Newt Gingrich (9%).Huckabee’s strong showing isn’t too surprising, as he’s led several national and state-level polls of the Republican primary. When PPP last polled the state in January, Huckabee also topped the Republican primary race at 28%.
Trump’s success is perhaps more mystifying, considering that he posted the lowest favorability rating among the GOP candidates in the same poll. Only 47% of voters said they had a favorable impression of Trump, while 33% said they viewed him unfavorably. By comparison, 73% viewed Huckabee favorably, while only 10% viewed him unfavorably.
Trump has quickly shot to the front of the GOP field following a media blitz in which he has repeatedly made unsubstantiated claims about President Obama’s citizenship. Earlier this month, a PPP poll found him actually leading a slate of potential Republican candidates nationwide by a solid 9-point margin.
Also of note in the latest poll is that Palin’s support has been nearly halved in just three months. In January, she netted a 23% share of the vote, a number that dwindled to 13% this month. While some of that support likely went to Trump — the Donald wasn’t included in PPP’s last survey — it echos a trend in other state and national polls that have shown Palin falling out of favor.
The PPP poll was conducted April 21-24 among 217 registered voters.