Sanders Outpolls GOP White House Hopefuls

Eleven months before the 2016 presidential election, Donald Trump is the undisputed leader in the Republican field, as Dr. Ben Carson drops to third place from a virtual tie for first place four weeks ago, according to a Quinnipiac University National poll released today but Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders beats the most popular Republican White House hopefuls by margins as big or bigger than his rival, Hillary Clinton.

“The survey demonstrated Sanders’ remarkable strength as a general election candidate based on his enormous popularity among young voters, his standing as the most trusted candidate and his strength with independents,” said Jeff Weaver, Sanders’ campaign manager. “This is the latest evidence that Bernie is the most electable candidate the Democrats could nominate.”

In the head-to-head pairings, Sanders “does just as well, or even better, against top Republicans” than Clinton, according to Douglas Schwartz, the Quinnipiac poll director. Sanders led Donald Trump 49 percent to 41 percent. He held a 49 to 39 percent lead over Sen. Ted Cruz, a 47 to 41 percent advantage over Dr. Ben Carson and a 44 to 43 percent edge over Sen. Marco Rubio.

When voters are asked whether they have a favorable or unfavorable view of candidates, Sanders is viewed more favorably than Clinton, Trump, Carson Rubio or Cruz, according to the independent pollster.

Moreover, according to Quinnipiac “Sanders gets the best honesty grades among top candidates.”

Clinton slightly widened her lead over Sanders to 60 – 30 percent, compared to 53 – 35 percent in a November 4 Quinnipiac survey but former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley has remained stagnant with just two percent, and six percent of Democrats say they are undecided.

“Some voters still don’t know Bernie as well as Secretary Clinton, but the more they know him the better they like him,” Weaver said. “Bernie is generating the kind of excitement and enthusiasm needed for Democrats to retain the White House and elect more Democrats in Congress and state capitals.”

“It doesn’t seem to matter what he says or who he offends, whether the facts are contested or the ‘political correctness’ is challenged, Donald Trump seems to be wearing Kevlar,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.  “Secretary Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders have to be hoping Trump is the GOP’s guy.”

Sanders does just as well, or even better, against top Republicans:

  • Topping Trump 49 – 41 percent;
  • Getting 44 percent to Rubio’s 43 percent;
  • Beating Cruz 49 – 39 percent;
  • Leading Carson 47 – 41 percent.

Clinton has a negative 44 – 51 percent favorability rating compared with a more postivie 44 – 31 percent for Sanders.

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