Trump Leads In New Hampshire, But Kasich Rises

A new poll shows Donald Trump surging to a double digit lead over his closest competitor in New Hampshire:

Donald Trump isn’t just doing well in national polls — he’s also making gains among voters in early primary states.

A new poll finds Trump with twice the support of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, his nearest competitor, among likely Republican presidential primary voters in New Hampshire.

The survey, taken by the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute in West Long Branch, New Jersey, comes after Trump’s July 18 remark that Arizona Sen. John McCain was “not a war hero” because he was captured.

“The controversy over comments about John McCain’s war service do not appear to have slowed the Trump steamroller,” observed Patrick Murray, the institute’s director.

Trump holds the top position in the Monmouth poll at 24 percent, Jeb Bush comes in second at 12 percent, Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker are tied for third at 7 percent.

Walker gets the highest net positive ratings, however: 57 percent positive, 16 percent negative. Trump has a 47 percent favorable rating and a 44 percent unfavorable rating.

The poll finds that Trump is taking votes from all GOP candidates, but he’s hurting Walker, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz the most.

If Trump were not in the race, 40 percent of voters surveyed said they would have switched their support to Christie, Walker or Cruz.

After Walker, the poll puts Marco Rubio at 6%, Ben Carson and Rand Paul at 5%, Chris Christie at 4%, and everyone else at 3% or under. In the RealClearPolitics average for the state, Trump is in front with 16.8%, followed by Bush at 14%, Scott Walker at 8.8%, Marco Rubio at 6%, Carson and Paul tied at 5.5%, Chris Christie at 5%, and John Kasich, who has now put in a strong showing in two consecutive New Hampshire polls, at 4.5%.

The obvious headline here, of course, is the fact that Donald Trump’s strength in the polls is most assuredly not going away. Perhaps something will happen in the upcoming debates to change that, but as I’ve said before, getting rid of Donald Trump is not going to be easy regardless of how many Republicans would wish otherwise. Of more interest, though, may be the fact that John Kasich is continuing to poll strongly in an important state. As I’ve said before, a lot of that can be attributed to the fact that he has spent a lot of time there already, and that his SuperPAC put a lot of money into media buys, but it’s something worth keeping an eye on. If Kasich continues this momentum, and especially if he makes into the debates, then he could end up being the “dark horse” candidate that the political pundits start talking about when October and November roll around.


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Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. michael reynolds says:

    As a Democrat Kasich is the guy I worry about most, followed by Jeb. Were it not for Jeb’s pitiful and seemingly unmotivated campaign, Kasich wouldn’t be doing as well as he is, those are Jeb’s voters Kasich’s taking. The establishment voter senses weakness in Jeb and they’re right.

    Kasich would represent a more sober GOP. He’d almost certainly carry Ohio, and if he went to Rubio for Veep he might take Florida, as well.

    In that event it’s down to Virginia, Colorado and New Hampshire. Kasich could beat Hillary.

  2. Neil Hudelson says:

    @michael reynolds:

    He also represents the best chance (OK tied with Jeb) that the GOP has of taking back some of the Latino vote. He puts forth sensible ideas that seem to be a true compromise between “Build a Wall” and the Democrat’s position. If he can make it past the primaries (immigration will be his Achilles’s heel there), he worries me the most.

    Starting at the 2:10 mark:

  3. Castanea says:

    Didn’t Kasich fail to hurt and reduce the life quality of the despicable, subhuman and basically demonkin union worker communists? Didn’t he expand Medicare under the ACA framework? The ads write themselves. Kasich is Leper Outcast Unclean.

    He did refuse federal aid in 2012 even if it caused suffering among his constituents (especially the poorer ones) so he can run on that a bit.

  4. michael reynolds says:


    The base won’t love Kasich, but whoever is nominated in the end will get there despite the base. Jeb, Rubio, Walker, they’ve all got weaknesses, but mano-a-mano with Hillary it’s Kasich who could be trouble.

  5. Modulo Myself says:

    How good is Kasich politically if he can’t capitalize? He’s way in the back. Trump’s popular, sure, but he’s not going to win. No one thinks he’s going to win. He’s supported by people for which an accusation of abuse and sexual assault is a plus rather than a minus. Kasich should be the one doing what Jeb Bush is too weak to do. That’s his ticket. Right now, I don’t see this happening.

    The GOP base would love the abuse, by the way. These guys are all classic bottoms. They want the attention. Kasich attacking the base as a bunch of sick gun-loving racists would be as good as Trump bellowing about Mexicans. They’d love him.

  6. al-Ameda says:

    This polling shows that some people are waking up from a Trump hangover.

    Kasich, if he gets any traction at all, is a normal person and could do very well in a general election.

  7. the Q says:

    Kasich is the guy we don’t want to be the nominee. He’s an Ohio moderate and we all know the track record that state has for those types of candidates.

    And, with so many candidates and a fractured GOP base, this may well go to the convention for deciding and Kasich may be the one who looks best at that late date to beat the Dem candidate.

  8. stonetools says:

    Kasich=Huntsman. And we all know how well he did. A moderate Republican isn’t going to win the Republican primary without saying a host of immoderate things. In the olden days, he could say one thing before a base crowd, and different thing before normal human beings, but the cell phone camera and the Internet has eliminated that game.
    I don’t expect him to gain traction at all without promising to deport the browns and build the wall and he’ll be on the defensive about accepting Obamamedicaid.

  9. Pinky says:



    I don’t see it. Huntsman went out of his way to alienate most of his party. Kasich hasn’t. There’s a difference between disagreeing with a group and basing your campaign on that disagreement.

  10. Pinky says:

    “Perhaps” something will happen in the debate to diminish Trump’s popularity? He’s going to be trounced. Bush and Christie can only make gains by attacking Trump head-on. Rubio has nothing to lose by following the same strategy. Trump has been a big-government pro-choice elitist and Democratic donor for most of his life, and he’s going to be onstage with 9 people with equal time and no respect for him. I’ll be shocked if they leave the bones behind.

  11. JohnMcC says:

    I’m completely ruined on any sympathy for Gov Kasich by his votes for three counts in the impeachment of Pres Clinton. It’s perhaps admirable that he was opposed to the B-2 bomber. Looking at his voting record, I don’t see much to distinguish him from the rest of the wretched Repub field.

    What I learn from the several commenters above is that it is amazingly easy to be thought of as a reasonable Repub by simply following the drill instructors advice to keep your head down, your mouth shut and your @ss open.

    No one above has mentioned his lengthy connection with Lehman Bros. No one mentions his frequently cited (if you look closely enough — google made it difficult) irascible personality (which I contrast with VP Biden’s gregarious nature).

    Perhaps he has enough appeal to the upper mid-west voters to be worth the attention of Dems. I doubt he’s some sort of magic candidate.

  12. Just 'nutha ig'rant cracker says:

    @Pinky: I think you are misjudging the extent to which Trump can suck all the air out of a room. I would like to see the performance you describe on Faux News in a couple of weeks (it would be great TV) but I don’t see those guys as having the killer instinct necessary to deal with Trump. Hope I’m wrong.

  13. grumpy realist says:

    Oh Great….Trump and Palin.

    I can just imagine how the Republican base is having a field day with that one….

  14. CSK says:

    @grumpy realist:

    Oh, they’re in ecstasies over the possibility. Two reality show stars with no grasp of the issues, a bumper-sticker ideology, and a rare gift for showboating.

    I must say, though, that I have to acknowledge their mutual ability to con the saps.

  15. Ron Beasley says:

    The idea that any of the Republican candidates in the Republican clown bus might have a chance to be president makes me glad I’m old and don’t have any grandchildren.

  16. Scott F. says:


    Huntsman went out of his way to alienate most of his party. Kasich hasn’t.


    But, I don’t see how he can avoid it for too long. At some point, he’s going to be asked to explain why it was a bad choice to reject Medicaid expansion in those states that did. He’s going to have to denigrate the “build a fence” idea.

  17. Pinky says:

    @Scott F.: Of course you can disagree with people without treating them like idiots. Huntsman, or his people, gave the impression that he could save the Republicans from themselves. That doesn’t win. If Kasich is a decent communicator, he can say that he’s worked on the particular issue (immigration, health care, whatever) longer than all the other candidates combined, that there are things he can or would do as president that are different than he did as governor because they’re different jobs, that the particular diisgreement is only a small part of fixing the real problem, et cetera.