PPP poll: Cruz love affair over as four-way tie emerges in 2016 GOP presidential primary race

Katie LaPotin, Red Alert Politics, November 5, 2013

Ted Cruz’s 15 minutes of fame appears to have faded away, as the Texas senator finds himself now stuck in a four-way tie for the Republican nomination for President in 2016, according to a Public Policy Polling study released Tuesday.

The study also shows that there is no cohesion among Republicans leading into the all-important elections, as the party remains completely split down the middle between the establishment and Tea Party wings of the GOP. Both New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul lead the pack with 16 percent, followed closely behind by Cruz at 15 percent and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush at 14 percent. Rounding out the field are Wisconsin Rep. Paul Ryan (11 percent), Florida Sen. Marco Rubio (10 percent), Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (6 percent) and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum (5 percent).

In fact, the study suggests that establishment candidates like Christie and Bush fared better following the 17-day government shutdown last month than their Tea Party counterparts. Bush saw a three-point bump in support over the last month, while Christie’s went up by two points. Paul’s, Rubio’s and Ryan’s vote shares all remained relatively stagnant throughout October.

The New Jersey governor, who is expected to win reelection handily Tuesday evening, dominates the GOP field among moderates while splitting the somewhat conservative base with Paul. Cruz continues to dominate among the very conservative base of the party.

Christie, Cruz and Paul are in a statistical dead heat as well among voters aged 18-45.

PPP also tested the potential 2016 Democratic field in its study, finding that once again former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is the candidate to beat with 67 percent of the vote. Should Clinton opt not to run, however, Vice President Joe Biden leads the pack of potential candidates with 27 percent, followed by Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren with 19 percent.

In the general election, Christie and Bush remain the most electable of the potential Republican candidates. The two moderates are the only ones to remain within 10 points of Clinton in a general election head-to-head match-up,

The study also found that Christie and Bush remain the most electable Republicans in the general election. Clinton continues to run ahead of all the tested Republican candidates, however only Christie and Bush trail the former First Lady by less than 10 points. Biden, meanwhile, is only running behind Christie and Bush in a prospective general election head-to-head match-up.

“Chris Christie will win a dominant reelection tonight,” Dean Debnam, the president of Public Policy Polling, said in a press release. “But he – and all the rest of the Republican 2016 hopefuls – still run behind Hillary Clinton for President.”

Public Policy Polling surveyed 649 American voters, including an oversample of 400 frequent Democratic primary voters and 629 Republican primary voters, nationwide via telephone from October 29-31, 2013. The margin of error for the overall study is +/- 3.8 percent, while for the Democratic oversample it is +/- 4.9 percent and for the Republican oversample it is +/- 3.9 percent. 

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