Ron DeSantis Just Beat Donald Trump In A Poll For The First Time In Months – Florida Governor Ron DeSantis beat former president Donald Trump in a poll for the first time since his ratings began to slump in February.
The straw poll conducted at the 2023 Young Republican National Convention saw Gov. DeSantis pip Trump by just over 1% of the vote. DeSantis amassed 36.6% among the circa 850 people surveyed, with Trump recording support from 35.4% of attendees.
The Young Republican National Federation (YRNF) hosted its annual convention in Dallas, TX from August 16-20. The YRNF focuses on registered Republicans between 18-40 to “provide them with better political knowledge and understanding of the issues of the day.” Texas Governor Greg Abbott, Florida Congresswoman Kat Cammack, and former Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake were among those to speak at the event.
The poll, conducted “entirely for fun” according to Newsweek, also saw businessman Vivek Ramaswamy receive support from 9.1% of attendees, while former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and South Carolina Senator Tim Scott received 7.5% and 5.5% respectively. The remaining 6% expressed support for other candidates.
Hayden Padgett, the newly elected chairman of the YRNF, said to Newsweek that the poll shows “how much excitement our members have to take on [President Joe] Biden next year.”
Should Donald Trump Worry? Yes.
For sure, the straw poll was not conducted using the rigorous standards of traditional methods.
However, it still provides a good indication of how young Republicans view their potential Republican nominees.
Young voters could play a massive role in the 2024 election should they turn out at the same rate as they did four years prior. According to the Brookings Institution, Americans under 45 could make up almost half of the electorate in next year’s presidential election.
Republican frontrunner Trump is unlikely to be too worried by DeSantis’ victory in the straw poll despite falling popularity in others.
He recorded his lowest level of support in a post-debate Emerson College poll since tracking for the 2024 election started last year.
Still, he maintained a 38-point lead over DeSantis with 50% of respondents the former president as their first choice.
Much of the Republican focus on President Biden has been over his age, which may reflect party preference for candidates.
DeSantis, 44, and Ramaswamy, 38, topped polls on the “winner” of the debate.
Gov. DeSantis came out on top in a The Washington Post/FiveThirtyEight/Ipsos poll with 29%, while Ramaswamy came second with 26%.
Meanwhile, a separate poll by Leger for the New York Post found that 23% of the 1,800 self-identified GOP respondents felt Ramaswamy won the August 23 debate, with DeSantis earning 21% of the vote.
Despite this, Republicans do not feel the 77-year-old Trump will be impacted in his ability to govern as president, with only 28% of GOP voters expressing concern over his age.
Shay Bottomley is a British journalist based in Canada. He has written for the Western Standard, Maidenhead Advertiser, Slough Express, Windsor Express, Berkshire Live and Southend Echo, and has covered notable events including the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
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