It’s just one poll, but it’s a national poll. And it shows that Cruz is reeling Trump in as the GOP primary draws closer.
Six weeks before the Iowa Caucuses open the 2016 presidential race in earnest, Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz lead the Republican field nationally, but Trump trails either Democratic candidate, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton or Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, and 50 percent of American voters say they would be embarrassed to have Trump as president, according to a Quinnipiac University National poll released today.
Trump has 28 percent of the GOP pack, with Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas at 24 percent. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida has 12 percent and Dr. Ben Carson has 10 percent, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University Poll finds. No other candidate tops 6 percent with 8 percent undecided. But 58 percent of those who name a candidate might change their mind.
Among Democrats, Clinton tops Sanders 61 – 30 percent. Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley has 2 percent, with 6 percent undecided and 41 percent who might change their mind.
Among Republicans, 28 percent of voters say they “would definitely not support” Trump, with 24 percent who would not back Bush.
Chris Christie, who is becoming a problem for Rubio, is at six percent. Jeb Bush is at four; rather than giving Trump free publicity by running PAC ads attacking him, Jeb! might want to call it a night.
What the poll also shows is that Trump might finally be grating on a lot of the public with the constant statements that aren’t just politically incorrect but crude.
Only 23 percent of all voters would be proud to have Trump as president.
If Clinton is elected, 33 percent of all voters would be proud and 35 percent would be embarrassed.
“Half of American voters say they’d be embarrassed to have Donald Trump as their Commander in Chief and most Americans think he doesn’t have a good chance in November, but there he is still at the top of the Republican heap,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll. “Hillary Clinton tops him. Sen. Bernie Sanders hammers him and Sen. Ted Cruz is snapping at his heels. Can a candidate that half the American electorate thinks is an embarrassment win in November?”
50 percent of the respondents say they’d be embarrassed by Trump as president. That’s a big number, and it means saying that Hillary got “shlonged” by Obama in 2008 and talking about her bathroom breaks during the Democrat debate on Saturday is exactly what he can’t continue doing. Now is the time for Trump to begin acting like somebody who could actually run the country, not the loudmouth drunk at the end of the bar.
Cruz’ strategy of presenting a more sophisticated, better-pedigreed populist conservative iconoclast version of Trump looks like it’s working. And what’s more, Cruz is doing it without destroying himself in a general election…
American voters back Clinton over Trump 47 – 40 percent. In other matchups:
Clinton gets 44 percent to Rubio’s 43 percent;
Clinton and Cruz are tied 44 – 44 percent.
So much for the idea that the GOP has to nominate someone “electable.” Rubio and Cruz are virtually identical against Clinton. Trump is at a major disadvantage, but he’s not the only “base” candidate in the race.