Maybe Ron DeSantis Should Quit? Donald Trump Leads By 46 Points 

As his lead over Ron DeSantis stays high, Donald Trump is looking to put his main opponent away. 

Donald Trump Dominates 

The 2024 Republican presidential primary contest still won’t see anyone actually voting for more than four months. But it’s looking a lot like it might be over. 

According to the latest Morning Consult tracking poll, Donald Trump now has 59 percent support in the contest, for a 46-point lead over anyone else in the field. 

Gov. Ron DeSantis is in second place with 13 percent and Vivek Ramaswamy is in third with 10 percent, with all other candidates in single digits. 

Nikki Haley is at 6 percent, Mike Pence at 5 percent, and Tim Scott and Chris Christie have 2 percent each. Asa Hutchinson is at 1 percent, with Doug Burgum and Will Hurd each polling at zero percent. 

Morning Consult describes Trump’s lead as one of his largest since the polling began late last year, while the former president’s net favorability among Republicans has increased from 45 points in late July to 61 points now. The survey also shows Donald Trump with 80 percent favorability among Republican voters. DeSantis is at 67 percent, Ramaswamy at 58 percent, and Haley at 50 percent.  

The other headline from the poll is that it shows Trump and President Biden tied in a hypothetical general election matchup, with each polling at 42 percent. Morning Consult attributed this to “a slight decline in the incumbent’s standing during a week in which House Republicans launched an impeachment inquiry to probe his family’s business dealings.” Biden had led Trump by a couple of points in the most recent editions of the Morning Consult tracking poll. 

Biden, however, continues to lead DeSantis, 42 to 39, should they meet in a general election matchup. 

There are indications that the general election race has seen a small move towards Trump in recent weeks, although it of course remains very early. The RealClearPolitics average has Trump ahead by 0.4 percent, with Trump holding small leads in the latest head-to-head polls from CBS News, Harvard-Harris, and Fox News. The most recent poll from Rasmussen Report, seen as a right-leaning outfit, actually has Biden ahead by 1 point. 

As for the Republican race, it’s not over yet, but it looks like the end is getting closer. 

Politico reported this week that Donald Trump is looking to “put the nail in DeSantis’ campaign coffin.” Trump’s campaign is hoping to deliver a “knockout punch” to DeSantis in Iowa, with some visits planned to that early caucus state. DeSantis, in recent months, has been a more frequent visitor to that state than Trump has. 

“No candidate has ever won Iowa [GOP caucus] by more than 12 points and even the most conservative polls have us at double that margin,” Alex Latcham, the Trump campaign’s early states director, told Politico. “But I try to continuously remind our team and our staff and everybody that we do not take it for granted.”

Meanwhile, The Daily Beast reported that Trumpworld is “moving on” from DeSantis, considering their battle with him as something in the past. 

“He still comes up in conversation, but the fire is gone because he’s already toast,” one Trump adviser told the Beast in reference to DeSantis. “It was fun nuking him, though.”

Also this week, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy predicted that Trump will be the Republican nominee and stated that DeSantis is “not on the same level,” although he stopped short of formally endorsing the former president. The interview came amid McCarthy’s ongoing battle with members of his own caucus, some of whom have threatened to remove him. 

“The thing is, President Trump is stronger today than he was in 2016 or 2020, and there’s a reason why. They saw the policies of what he was able to do with America – putting America first, making our economy stronger,” McCarthy told Fox News’ Maria Bartiromo on Sunday. 

Author Expertise and Experience

Stephen Silver is a Senior Editor for 19FortyFive. He is an award-winning journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Stephen has authored thousands of articles over the years that focus on politics, technology, and the economy for over a decade. Follow him on X (formerly Twitter) at @StephenSilver, and subscribe to his Substack newsletter.

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