Trump opens widest lead yet over challengers
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Republican presidential front-runner Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump watching 'very closely' as Portland braces for dueling protests WaPo calls Trump admin 'another threat' to endangered species Are Democrats turning Trump-like? MORE has increased his lead over GOP rivals to its largest margin yet in an ABC News/Washington Post poll released early Tuesday.

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Trump sits at 38 percent among registered Republicans and GOP-leaning independents in the latest survey, followed by Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas) at 15 percent, Sen. Marco Rubio (Fla.) at 12 percent and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson at 12 percent.

All other candidates remain in the single digits, with former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush taking 5 percent in the latest survey to round out the top five candidates.

Cruz has essentially doubled his support in the poll compared to last month, while Carson's support has been cut roughly in half. Trump has gained 6 points and Rubio has gained 1 point since mid-November.

National polls are viewed with less emphasis than those conducted in states where the first votes in the nominating process are cast, starting in early February.

Cruz led Trump in Iowa in a Des Moines Register/Bloomberg poll released over the weekend, and the dynamic between the two will be of major interest at the latest GOP debate Tuesday night.

Trump has maintained a solid lead in New Hampshire polls, though several rivals pushing for establishment support have recently shifted in polling position.

The latest ABC/Post survey finds Trump trailing Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton in a head-to-head match-up, 53 to 40 percent among adults. It's a 6-point margin among registered voters, however.

Nearly seven in 10 adults surveyed nationally, 69 percent, indicated they would feel anxious with Trump in the White House, comparing to 29 percent who would be comfortable with him as president.

The survey of 1,002 adults was conducted from Dec. 10 to Dec. 13 via landlines and cellphones with an overall margin of error of 3.5 points. The margin of error is 6 points for the 362 Republican and GOP-leaning registered voters.