Poll shows Trump still out in front

  • 19/08/2015
Donald Trump (Reuters)
Donald Trump (Reuters)

Bombastic real-estate mogul Donald Trump has extended his lead in the 2016 Republican nomination race, beating establishment candidates and anti-Washington renegades alike as he topped a new poll.

Trump, who has taken America's political world by storm since announcing his White House campaign in June, leads with 24 percent support, well ahead of second-place Jeb Bush with 13 percent, according to a new national CNN/ORC poll released on Tuesday (local time).

Despite a broad field of 17 Republican candidates, Trump's backing is five points higher than in the same poll three weeks ago, prior to the party's much-watched first major debate earlier this month.

Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson is third, with nine per cent, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and Senator Marco Rubio of Florida are tied at fourth with eight per cent, and Kentucky's Senator Rand Paul is in sixth place with six percent.

The poll is the latest of several surveys showing the world's most famous landlord is ruling the roost in his party's presidential race.

It also shows respondents trusting him over all other Republican candidates when it comes to handling the economy, immigration, social issues like abortion, and battling Islamic State extremists.

But the survey also points to a potential Achilles heel: when asked whether Republican chances for winning the White House would be better with or without The Donald as the nominee, 38 percent said better with him, but 58 percent said better without.

He was underwater in favourability as well - whether a voter's overall feeling toward a candidate is positive or negative.

Trump polled 36 percent favourable to 59 percent unfavourable, figures which were very similar to those of Bush, the former Florida governor and the son and brother of two presidents.

Among the major candidates, former Hewlett-Packard chief executive Carly Fiorina - in eighth spot with five per cent support - received one of the best favourability rankings, at 27-19.

But in a sign that it is still early in the presidential race, with more than five months before the first votes in the primary process are cast and nearly 15 months before election day, a whopping 43 percent of respondents said they had never heard of Fiorina.