By Ben Kamisar
Donald TrumpDonald TrumpVulnerable Republican seeks edge on homeland security Trump details '50 facts' attacking Clinton Trump blasts poll showing Clinton with a 12-point lead MORE and Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonSanders points to disconnect between 'mainstream media' and public Vulnerable Republican seeks edge on homeland security Trump details '50 facts' attacking Clinton MORE hold double-digit leads in Virginia ahead of the state’s Super Tuesday primary, a new Monmouth University poll shows.
Trump sits at 41 percent in the survey released Thursday, well ahead of Sen. Marco RubioMarco RubioRubio: I hope I can trust whoever wins with the nuclear codes Rubio faces Trump-like challenger in primary Rubio on VP: 'It's too late for that' MORE’s (Fla.) 27 percent and Sen. Ted CruzTed CruzO'Malley gives Trump a nickname: 'Chicken Donald' Va. GOP delegate files lawsuit over bound convention votes Our most toxic export: American politick MORE’s (Texas) 14 percent. Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Ben Carson are tied at 7 percent.
Trump leads among most demographics but is also the candidate most voters would be disappointed to see win the nomination. Twenty-six percent feel that way about Trump, while 23 percent about Cruz. Only about 10 percent of the likely voters would be upset to see Kasich, Rubio or Carson as the party’s standard-bearer in November.
As Kasich and Carson are not expected to be strong contenders in the state, the Monmouth poll shows that the dynamics of the race wouldn’t substantially change if they dropped out before the vote.
On the Democratic side, Clinton leads Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders points to disconnect between 'mainstream media' and public Sanders not ready to endorse Clinton: 'Stand up, be bolder' Sanders: 'We lost some very important fights' in Democratic platform MORE (I-Vt.) 60 percent to 33 percent, winning with male, female, white and black voters. The two poll about even with voters under 50 years old, despite Sanders’s success with the demographic in other states.
Forty-seven percent of the likely Democratic voters are completely sold on their picks.
Virginia is part of the flurry of states holding primaries or caucuses as part of Super Tuesday on March 1. That makes the day a crucial one for campaigns looking to amass delegates and capture the momentum as the race for the nomination continues.
Republicans have 49 delegates up for grabs in the state compared to 95 for the Democrats.