Presidential races

Poll: Trump up by 7 points in Iowa; dominates in NH, SC

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Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump holds a 7-point lead over his nearest challenger in Iowa less than a week before the first-in-the-nation caucuses there, according to a new poll.

{mosads}The NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll released Thursday morning shows Trump with 32 percent support among likely Republican caucusgoers.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) is in second place, with 25 percent, followed by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), with 18 percent. No other Republican candidate has double-digit support in the Hawkeye State.

The new results show a shake-up at the top of the GOP field in Iowa. Just three weeks ago, Trump trailed Cruz by 4 points.

Pollsters also found Trump with strong leads in other early-voting states. The real estate mogul has a 19-point lead in New Hampshire over Cruz, 31 percent to 12 percent, and a 16-point lead over the Texas senator in South Carolina, 36 percent to 20 percent.

“Trump is positioned to run the house in these first three states,” said Lee Miringoff, director of the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion. “Will it happen? The answer depends on when or if anti-Trump sentiment will coalesce to interrupt his march to the nomination.”

The GOP field under Trump is much closer in both New Hampshire and South Carolina, pollsters found.

Rubio and Ohio Gov. John Kasich trail Cruz by 1 point in the Granite State, with 11 percent each.

Rubio is also the only other Republican White House hopeful with double-digit support in South Carolina, pollsters added.

Thursday’s results show he has 14 percent in the Palmetto State, edging out former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who has 8 percent.

Mark Hensch contributed to this report.

Updated at 7:22 a.m.

Tags Donald Trump Marco Rubio Ted Cruz
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