According to a new poll conducted by CBS News, former President Donald Trump has now increased his support amongst Republican voters to 62%.
That gives Trump his largest lead over the GOP field yet, with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis alone in second place at 16%, more than doubling the support of every other Republican candidate in the race.
CBS News Poll: Trump Posts Biggest Lead Yet Over DeSantis
Trump — 62% (+46)
DeSantis — 16%
Ramaswamy — 7%
Pence — 5%
Scott — 3%
Haley — 2%
Christie — 2%
Hutchinson — 1%
Burgum — 1%
— InteractivePolls (@IAPolls2022) August 20, 2023
Despite the best efforts of countless Democrat-led witch hunts, Trump’s popularity and support amongst working-class voters only continues to grow as Americans overwhelmingly reject the lawfare President Joe Biden’s weaponized justice system is inflicting on the former President.
Based on the poll, 77% of Republicans believe Democrats’ indictments against Trump are politically motivated, while 72% of self-identified supporters of the former President said that supporting him was a way to show support during his legal battles.
Furthermore, as the first GOP debate proved on Wednesday night, as establishment candidates, like former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, were ridiculed mercilessly by Republican voters as they attempted to attack Trump, the poll also found that 90% of Republicans oppose the idea of other candidates attacking the frontrunner.
“Trump voters’ affinity for him seems to insulate the former president from attacks whether or not he debates this week, because voters basically say they aren’t receptive to such criticism,” CBS News reported. “Instead, a whopping nine in 10 GOP primary voters want the other candidates to focus on making the case for themselves, but not against Trump.”
Ultimately, any GOP candidate not named Trump will have to walk the ultimate tightrope to somehow navigate such a political environment.
Making the case for your own candidacy and drawing contrasts with Trump without coming off as attacking him in any way is a next-to-impossible task.
At the end of the day, Republican voters have clearly already decided that the race is over, and there’s really no point in any of the other candidates – some of whom will be needed in 2028 regardless of whether or not Trump wins in 2024 – completely destroying their standing with Trump’s loyalists any more than they already have.
Now, with Republicans rejecting, and outright attacking, any backup plan whatsoever, they’ll just need to hope that Democrats don’t throw Donald Trump in jail before he takes office.
Because that’s certainly what they’re banking on.
Political Animal News will keep you up-to-date on any new developments in this ongoing story.