Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson and businessman Donald TrumpDonald TrumpPoll: Trump has 1-point lead over Clinton Is Trump's isolationist world view a bunch of 'globaloney?' Former H.W. Bush adviser backs Clinton MORE are neck-and-neck for the GOP’s 2016 presidential nomination in Iowa, a new poll says.
The Bloomberg/Des Moines Register survey released on Saturday finds that the two are tied in Iowa caucus-goer support when voters’ first and second choices for the Republican coronation are combined.
Each is the first or second choice of 32 percent of respondents.
Trump won the poll overall, getting 23 percent support. Carson comes in second at 18 percent. The next-closest competitors are Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) at 8 percent each.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush are tied for fifth place with 6 percent support each. After them is Carly Fiorina at 5 percent, and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) at 4 percent each.
Tenth place is a three-way tie between Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Ohio Gov. John Kasich and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.
“Trump and Carson, one bombastic and the other sometimes soft-spoken, could hardly be more different in their outward presentations,” said J. Ann Selzer, president of Selzer & Co., who conducted the poll, according to Bloomberg.
“Yet they’re both finding traction because they don’t seem like politicians and there’s a strong demand for that right now,” she added.
Saturday’s poll found that Trump is vastly improving his position in Iowa since launching his presidential campaign in June.
He is now rated favorably by 61 percent of Republican voters there, with 35 percent ranking him unfavorably.
The poll also found that 69 percent of first-time caucus-goers and 73 percent of Tea Party supporters are backing the outspoken billionaire.
It added that 29 percent would never vote for Trump, a number that has is half of what it was in the last Bloomberg/Des Moines Register sampling in May.
The survey found that Carson is buoyed in Iowa by his likable public persona and his vocal Christian faith.
It said that 79 percent likely GOP caucus-goers view the retired neurosurgeon favorably, the highest score in the GOP’s entire 2016 field.
He also leads the hunt for Iowa’s evangelical demographic with 23 percent of their support.
Trump is currently the frontrunner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination across multiple national polls.
The latest RealClearPolitics average of polls has the businessman with 23.5 percent support, and Carson in second place at 10.3 percent.
- Updated at 7:57 p.m.