Troops favor Donald TrumpDonald TrumpCheney challenger wins Wyoming Republican activists' straw poll We must do more to protect American Jews 6 in 10 say they would back someone other than Biden in 2024: Fox News poll MORE and Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSunday shows - Russia standoff over Ukraine dominates Sanders says Biden can't count on him to support 'almost any' spending package compromise Sanders says Republicans are 'laughing all the way to Election Day' MORE (I-Vt.) as the next commander in chief, according to a new survey by Military Times.
Trump took first place, with 27 percent of troops surveyed in a poll of 931 active-duty troops, reservists and members of the National Guard.
Sanders came in a close second at 22 percent, according to the poll published Tuesday. Meanwhile, Democratic front-runner Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonNo Hillary — the 'Third Way' is the wrong way The dangerous erosion of Democratic Party foundations The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Democrats see victory in a voting rights defeat MORE received a little more than 11 percent support.
The results, while unscientific, offer a snapshot of military voting preferences, the Times said in a report. About 64 percent of respondents identified as enlisted personnel, and 36 percent identified as officers. The survey was conducted March 9-14.
Support for Trump comes despite a backlash from retired military leaders blasting the business mogul for calling for torture of terrorists and other practices that go against the Geneva Conventions.
Several dozen respondents did, however, call Trump dangerous for the military and the country in a comments section, and three said they'd leave the service if he becomes commander in chief.
Meanwhile, Sanders has been attacked by critics for having weak foreign policy credentials, especially compared to Clinton.
However, Sanders won a big veteran endorsement from one of two female combat veterans in the House, Rep. Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardThe perfect Democratic running mate for DeSantis? Progressives breathe sigh of relief after Afghan withdrawal Hillicon Valley: US has made progress on cyber but more needed, report says | Democrat urges changes for 'problematic' crypto language in infrastructure bill | Facebook may be forced to unwind Giphy acquisition MORE (D-Hawaii), last month. And the Vermont senator sits on and has also chaired the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee.
Sanders has repeatedly voiced his vote against the Iraq War in 2002 as evidence of solid judgment, while attacking Clinton for her support for the war.
Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioPut partisan politics aside — The Child Tax Credit must be renewed immediately These Senate seats are up for election in 2022 Lawmakers press Biden admin to send more military aid to Ukraine MORE (R-Fla.), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations and Intelligence committees who has made national security a centerpiece of his campaign, was second to last in the poll, after Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R). Rubio garnered only 9 percent support.
Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzHillicon Valley — Senate panel advances major antitrust bill Senate panel advances bill blocking tech giants from favoring own products Lawmakers press Biden admin to send more military aid to Ukraine MORE (R-Texas) came in with 17 percent support.
About a third of respondents did not affiliate with either Republican or Democratic parties. Sanders ranked more popular among that group.
Among officers, Trump led but by a much smaller margin — 21 percent. Cruz came in second with 18 percent, Sanders at 16 percent and Clinton at 15 percent.
Retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis, who is revered among troops, received one write-in vote, despite last summer batting down any speculation he would be interested in running.