Poll: Nearly two-thirds of GOP voters can imagine backing Trump

Donald Trump, Trump Force One
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A new national poll by The Wall Street Journal and NBC News found that 65 percent of Republican primary voters could see themselves backing Donald TrumpDonald TrumpConway says she'll talk to Trump about press safety Helen Mirren gives advice for being a ‘nasty woman’ Gingrich goes off on Megyn Kelly over Trump allegations: 'You are fascinated with sex' MORE for president in 2016.

That figure was at 23 percent when the poll asked the same question in March.

The shift shows increasing acceptance of the billionaire businessman in the GOP ahead of the Iowa caucuses on Feb. 1.

However, Ted CruzTed CruzThe Trail 2016: An important lesson in geography Webb: The race to 270 Potential Cruz challenger: 'Don't close off your options' MORE and Marco RubioMarco RubioThe Trail 2016: An important lesson in geography Clinton takes aim at Rubio in Florida rally Dem Senate hopeful dodges leaked Clinton emails at debate MORE still lead in the category. Seventy-one percent of GOP voters could see themselves backing Cruz, and 67 percent could imagine backing Rubio, the poll found. In March, Cruz was at 40 percent on that question and Rubio was at 56 percent. 

Jeb Bush, who led the category in June, at 75 percent, is now down to 42 percent.

The survey included 400 GOP primary voters contacted Jan. 9-13. The margin of error was 4.9 percentage points.