Rubio Edges Out Cruz While Trump Retains Commanding National Lead

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) has pulled ahead of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) in the national Republican presidential race, although he still lags 15 points behind billionaire hotelier Donald Trump in a Rasmussen poll released Tuesday.

The Rasmussen poll showed support for Trump at 36 percent, while Rubio stood at 21 percent and Cruz at 17 percent. This represents gain of five points for Trump, while support for Cruz has dropped three points, thus widening Rubio’s lead as second-place contender (he polled at 21 percent in the last Rasmussen poll as well).

This is consistent with other polling, which has shown Rubio holding an advantage in the long-running struggle between the two senators to lock down second place.

TPM’s PollTracker Average shows Trump at 36.3 percent, Cruz at 17.6 percent and Rubio at 17 percent.

The Rasmussen poll was carried out from Feb. 21-22 by automated phone interview. Pollsters surveyed 697 likely Republican voters with a margin of error of 4 percentage points.

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