Trump Maintains Big Lead in RedState Straw Poll, But DeSantis Closes the Gap in Several States

In an ongoing straw poll of RedState readers, former president Donald Trump still holds a commanding overall lead over his GOP primary opponents.

However, the gap isn’t as wide when you look at the numbers by individual states, leading to the possibility that there is still time for some candidates to gain momentum in next year’s race.

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Overall, Trump leads the rest of the GOP field with roughly 52 percent of the vote. Ron DeSantis trails behind him at 38 percent.

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Trump’s numbers are in line with the national polling averages on the race (he is currently averaging 53.7 percent in the RealClearPolitics average), but the numbers are a stronger turnout for the Florida governor, who is currently averaging just shy of 21 percent. Every other candidate is performing lower in the RedState straw poll than they are in the polling averages.

More interestingly, though, are the state-by-state numbers, which seem to benefit some of the other candidates more than they do Trump.

DeSantis is ahead of Trump in five states:

  • Utah: 49-42
  • Colorado: 48-40
  • Georgia: 46-45
  • Virginia: 45-43
  • Wisconsin: 44-43

Colorado is Trump’s weakest state, with support among just 40 percent of voters. U.S. Senator Tim Scott picked up 5 percent in the state, and tech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy got 4 percent.

Clearly, Donald Trump still has a commanding lead over his opponents, but DeSantis is trending higher among voters in this poll than in the national average – with the exception of Washington D.C. (16 percent support), DeSantis is well into the 20s in every region measured.

This data comes as candidates are preparing for the first GOP primary debate, which will be held toward the end of August, and is hosted by Fox News, Young America’s Foundation (YAF), and Rumble in Milwaukee.

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Based on the RNC’s current rules, the following candidates currently qualify for the debate stage:

  • Donald Trump
  • Ron DeSantis
  • Nikki Haley
  • Vivek Ramaswamy
  • Tim Scott
  • Chris Christie

Meanwhile, former vice president Mike Pence is struggling to meet the requirements.

Trump has hinted that he won’t show up for any debate, and is instead focusing on his current legal issues and holding the occasional fundraiser. He is slated to host one of those fundraisers in south Louisiana in the near future. The other candidates, however, are expected to show up at the debate.

RedState readers are still eligible to vote in our straw poll and can do so by visiting this link. Voting is limited to one per person, once every 30 days.

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