Poll: Trump easily defeats potential GOP rivals in hypothetical primary matchups

President TrumpDonald John TrumpRepublicans aim to avoid war with White House over impeachment strategy New York Times editorial board calls for Trump's impeachment Trump rips Michigan Rep. Dingell after Fox News appearance: 'Really pathetic!' MORE performed a hostile takeover of the Republican Party in 2016 but as he prepares for his 2020 reelection bid, a new poll shows that GOP voters would overwhelmingly support him against several intraparty rivals.

A Hill.TV American Barometer survey of 1,001 registered voters conducted Nov. 16-17 found that Trump would easily defeat onetime presidential rival, Ohio Gov. John Kasich. Among self-identified Republican respondents, 67 percent said they would choose Trump while only 14 percent said they would back the outgoing Ohio governor.

The president would also have no trouble beating Arizona Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeLindsey Graham basks in the impeachment spotlight Kelly, McSally virtually tied in Arizona Senate race: poll The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Nareit — White House cheers Republicans for storming impeachment hearing MORE, a long-time critic with whom he has clashed repeatedly. In a hypothetical two-way matchup, of those surveyed, just 9 percent of Republican voters supported Flake while 70 percent backed Trump in the poll.

Among independent voters (who are allowed to vote in party primaries in many states, including the first in New Hampshire), Kasich presents a more stiff challenge to Trump.

Of those that identified as independents, 33 percent said they would support Kasich while 28 percent said they would back Trump. Trump remained ahead among all voters with 33 percent support to the outgoing Ohio governor's 32 percent.

While Kasich's potential bid might have some currency among independents, ultimately, it is Republican voters who will determine Trump's future within the party, said Dritan Nesho, CEO of HarrisX, the company that conducted the survey.

"Even though independents and Democrats might have slightly different preferences, that doesn't matter. Ultimately it's registered Republicans that will decide that question," Nesho said during Tuesday's broadcast of "What America's Thinking."

"Frankly, it's his party," Nesho said. "By a factor of two-to-one, almost half of Republicans associate with Trump over the party."

No current or former Republican officials have announced a primary challenge to the president, but several remaining anti-Trump politicians have urged others to make a go of it.

During a Sunday interview with CNN, Flake said that he would be unlikely to mount a challenge to Trump.

“I think the future of the party is with people with an optimistic vision moving ahead. I don’t think that will be me. I think there are better candidates out there. But somebody needs to run,” he told host Jake Tapper.

Flake will be departing from the Senate at the end of the year. He declined to run for reelection after several polls of Arizonans found that his anti-Trump image made him unpopular among Republicans. In July, a Morning Consult survey found that Flake was the second-least popular senator in his or her own state. 

In the latest American Barometer survey, Flake was the second-least popular potential GOP challenger among Republican respondents. Nebraska Sen. Ben SasseBenjamin (Ben) Eric SasseSenators zero in on shadowy court at center of IG report Live coverage: DOJ inspector general testifies on Capitol Hill FCC votes to bar use of its funds to purchase Huawei, ZTE equipment MORE, who is not well-known nationally, was supported by only 8 percent of Republican voters.

The two GOP politicians who received the most support were outgoing Speaker of the House Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanJeffries blasts Trump for attack on Thunberg at impeachment hearing Live coverage: House Judiciary to vote on impeachment after surprise delay House Ethics Committee informs Duncan Hunter he can no longer vote after guilty plea MORE (R-Wis.) and former 2012 GOP presidential nominee Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyIs a trap being set for Trump in the Senate trial? The Hill's Morning Report — Sponsored by AdvaMed — House panel delays impeachment vote until Friday Senate gears up for battle over witnesses in impeachment trial MORE, who were supported by 20 percent and 19 percent of Republican respondents, respectively.

—Matthew Sheffield