A new national poll out Monday shows real estate mogul Donald Trump surging ahead by his widest margin yet, with the Republican presidential candidate cementing himself as the GOP frontrunner by almost 30 points.
Trump hit 41 percent national support among Republican and GOP-leaning voters in the December Monmouth University Poll, a marked increase from 28 percent in its October poll, to hit his widest lead of any national poll this cycle. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) saw a more modest 4-point boost to 14 percent support, good enough for second place in the still-crowded Republican field.
Behind Cruz, 10 percent of voters said they would back Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), 9 percent backed retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, and 3 percent supported both former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Ohio Gov. John Kasich. No other candidate for the Republican nomination reached above two percent support.
The poll is likely an unwelcome shock to the GOP establishment, who have started hatching behind-closed-doors plans to derail Trump’s campaign. In response to those reports, Cruz has pointedly refused to take Trump’s bait and Carson, once a top flight contender with the billionaire, threatened to leave the party altogether.
Monmouth conducted its poll of 1006 adults by phone from Dec. 10 to 13, 2015, with 385 registered voters who identified as Republican or Republican-leaning used for this sample. It has a 5 percent margin of error.
Read the full results here.