According to the Yahoo-YouGov poll, which was conducted from Thursday to Friday and released on Saturday, Trump led DeSantis by a margin of 57% to 31%. The 26 point gap is three times larger than the eight percent lead Trump had in the same poll two weeks prior. In that poll, the former president had a 47% to 39% advantage against the Florida governor. When the poll was taken in February, DeSantis led Trump 45% to 41%.
When the two GOP front-runners are up against a larger field of 10 declared and possible rivals, Trump's support remains constant while DeSantis's numbers fall. In the bigger primary field, the former president had 52% support, up from 44% in the prior poll. DeSantis, on the other hand, fell from 28% to 21%.
No other announced or possible contender, including former South Carolina governor Nikki Haley and vice president Mike Pence, scored in the double digits. Pence and Haley each received 3% of the vote, well behind Trump's 54% and DeSantis's 21%.
Trump was selected as the GOP contender in 2024 by 54% of Republicans and GOP-leaning independents polled; only 33% said they would prefer a different candidate. This is an increase of three points from the previous poll, where 51% of respondents said they preferred the former president. Nevertheless, when those who did not support Republicans were included, the results were more divided.
The increase in backing appears to confirm what many political analysts had expected after Trump revealed the impending indictment earlier this month: that the former president being indicted would strengthen his 2024 candidacy, particularly with Republicans.
The indictment was referred to as a "enormous political gift" for Trump by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), who has a contentious relationship with the former president.
On Friday, the Texas senator said that Alvin Bragg's indictment was "devastating to the rule of law [and] to the confidence the American people will have in our justice system" and added that if he were a Democrat, he "might well report Alvin Bragg to the Federal Election Commission for making the single greatest in kind contribution to a presidential campaign in history."
Hey, Trump announced approximately two weeks ago that he was about to be arrested and that it would happen the next day, the man continued. When many national Democrats panicked and pressured Bragg, saying, "Don't do this, don't do this, this will help Trump," Bragg delayed and delayed and delayed.
On Thursday, Democrat Bragg indicted the former president on charges relating to hush money payments made to porn star Stormy Daniels in 2016. Bragg has declined to prosecute a number of crimes since taking office in January. The indictment represents the first time a former president of the United States has faced criminal charges.
Trump's former attorney Michael Cohen testified in front of Congress in 2019 that he gave Daniels, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, $130,000 during the 2016 campaign to keep her quiet about an alleged liaison she had with the president in 2005. Cohen, who admitted guilt and received prison time for the alleged payment, claimed to legislators that Trump paid him back in increments each month. Trump has vowed to battle the allegations and has denied any misconduct.