South Carolina poll: Trump up 17 points ahead of primary
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Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump pushes back on recent polling data, says internal numbers are 'strongest we've had so far' Illinois state lawmaker apologizes for photos depicting mock assassination of Trump Scaramucci assembling team of former Cabinet members to speak out against Trump MORE holds a big lead over other Republicans in a new poll of South Carolina voters.


Trump has a 17-point edge over his closest competitors in the Public Policy Polling survey released late Monday to The State newspaper.

He has 35 percent support, while Sens. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward Cruz3 real problems Republicans need to address to win in 2020 The Hill's Morning Report - Trump on defense over economic jitters Democrats keen to take on Cornyn despite formidable challenges MORE (R-Texas) and Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioTrump moves forward with F-16 sale to Taiwan opposed by China The Hill's Morning Report — Trump and the new Israel-'squad' controversy Trump crosses new line with Omar, Tlaib, Israel move MORE (R-Fla.) are tied for second with 18 percent apiece.

Gov. John Kasich (R-Ohio) ranks fourth at 10 percent, followed by former Gov. Jeb Bush (R-Fla.) and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson deadlocking at 7 percent each.

The poll was taken Feb. 14–15, after Saturday night's GOP debate. Trump atacked former President George W. Bush's record on terrorism and the war on Iraq in that debate, arguing he failed to keep the country safe. It provoked a fiery confrontation with the former president's brother. 

Many wondered if the attacks by Trump, which prompted boos by the South Carolina crowd, would cut into his popularity in the state. 

This new poll, at least, suggests that it did not. 

PPP's survey of 897 likely GOP primary voters has a 3.3 percent margin of error. 

Trump’s support in the Palmetto State is up since the firm’s last sampling in November, when he lead the field with 25 percent.

Carson took 21 percent in that survey, followed by Cruz at 15 percent, Rubio at 13 percent and Bush at 8 percent.

Trump also remains the leader for the Republican presidential nomination nationwide. He commands an 8-percent edge over the competition, according to the RealClearPolitics average of polls.