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Trump bleeds GOP base support

Thought Leader: Josh Kraushaar
December 14, 2022
Source: Axios
Written by: Josh Kraushaar

A raft of new polls shows former President Trump is losing juice among core Republican voters — a rare but unmistakable drop in base support that would jeopardize his 2024 comeback bid.

Why it matters: Trump famously boasted in 2016 that he “could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.” Over the past seven years, Trump’s iron grip on the GOP base led many political observers to conclude he may have been right.

Driving the news: A new USA Today/Suffolk poll found Trump’s favorability among Republicans dropped from 75% in October to 64% in December — below the 70% threshold generally viewed as a Mendoza line for support within a candidate’s own party.

The big picture: The conventional wisdom that Trump is the favorite to be the GOP nominee is no longer borne out by the polling data.

Between the lines: There’s an understandable reluctance to downplay Trump’s political prospects, given how often he’s pulverized the conventional wisdom.

Reality check: Even if Republicans appear to be moving past Trump, they’re not moving past his anti-establishment brand of politics. The WSJ poll finds Trump crushing former Vice President Mike Pence, 63%–28%, in a head-to-head matchup.

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