Thursday, October 22, 2015

New Hampshire voters reject Jeb Bush despite his massive super PAC ad spending. Trump 24, Bush 10. Voters view Jeb Bush as inferior to Donald Trump on most key attributes. Trump supporters most locked in at 51%-Bloomberg Politics Saint Anselm New Hampshire poll, 10/15-18, 2015

Trump 24
Carson 17
Bush 10
Rubio 8
Fiorina 7
Kasich 7
Christie 5 
Cruz 4
Paul 4
Huckabee 1
Graham 1
Santorum 1

Oct. 15-18, 400 likely Republican primary voters, 4.9 margin of error, telephone interviews

10/21/15, "Ad Blitz Fails to Lift Jeb Bush's Numbers in New Hampshire: Bloomberg Politics/Saint Anselm Poll," Bloomberg, John McCormick, Arit John

"A month of extensive New Hampshire advertising on Jeb Bush's behalf has failed to boost his support and likely Republican primary voters there view him as inferior to frontrunner Donald Trump on most key attributes.

A new Bloomberg Politics/Saint Anselm New Hampshire Poll also shows Bush's favorability rating among the state's Republican primary voters has dropped to its lowest level—57 percent—since the survey was first taken almost a year ago.

In the horse race, the former Florida governor has seen his overall support drop to 10 percent, from 11 percent in May. That puts him in third place, behind Trump at 24 percent and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson at 17 percent, despite an advertising push by the pro-Bush Right to Rise super political action committee that has dominated the state's television screens for the past four weeks. 

With such a heavy spend, the Bush campaign was undoubtedly hoping for a bounce, said Doug Usher of Washington-based Purple Strategies, which conducted the poll Oct. 15-18. “But their candidate is closer to Rubio, Fiorina and Kasich than to the top tier, and his favorables are moving in the wrong direction.”

Read the methodology and questions here.

There's virtually no good news in the poll for Bush, who early on in the race was thought to be a better fit among New Hampshire's more moderate voters than in more conservative-leaning, early states like Iowa and South Carolina. Besides a declining favorability rating, the poll shows his positions on immigration and national educational standards are troubling to roughly half of likely primary voters, he lags on questions of empathy and authenticity and he's the second-choice pick of just 6 percent.

Bush isn't alone among experienced politicians trying to gain traction in New Hampshire. Senator Marco Rubio of Florida is backed by 8 percent, while former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina and Ohio Governor John Kasich are both at 7 percent. Kasich has also invested heavily in New Hampshire, making roughly a dozen trips to the state since declaring his candidacy in July. In the past month, the super-PAC backing him, New Day for America, has run 144 spots in the state's television markets, according to data compiled by Kantar Media's CMAG....

The poll, which included 400 likely Republican primary voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.9 percentage points, shows roughly two-thirds of the electorate could be persuaded to support someone other than their first choice. Trump's supporters are more locked in than his nearest competitor's, with 51 percent of the billionaire's backers saying their mind is made up, compared to 30 percent for Carson's....

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who has heavily invested his campaign time in New Hampshire, is backed by 5 percent of likely primary voters in the poll. All of the other candidates were below 5 percent, with the state's first-in-the-nation primary less than four months away....

Strong majorities aren't concerned about some of Carson's recent controversial statements, including 68 percent who say they're not bothered by his declaration that being Muslim is disqualifying to become president. An even larger group, 78 percent, weren't troubled that he said Adolf Hitler's mass murder of Jews might not have been as successful if the people had been armed.

Bush's advocacy for a "path to legal residence for immigrants who are in this country illegally" makes 53 percent of those in the survey less supportive of him, while 49 percent say that about his backing of Common Core national education standards. Nearly three-quarters say they aren't bothered that he's the son and brother of two former presidents.

When told that Cruz has "repeatedly led the charge for government shutdowns for his own political advantage," 52 percent of Republican primary voters say they're less supportive of him, while 41 percent say it doesn't concern them."...

[Ed. note: Someone at this polling company seems to have anger issues.]

(continuing): "After being told that Fiorina was "fired as CEO at Hewlett-Packard with a $21 million severance package after the company lost stock value," 59 percent said they aren't bothered, while 37 percent said it would make them less supportive of her.

Rubio's youthfulness isn't much of a concern, with 87 percent saying they're not bothered that the 44-year-old would be the third-youngest president if elected....

Trump beats Bush, 31 percent to 13 percent, on a question about who in the field would be best able to handle Russian President Vladimir Putin. None of the other candidates in the smaller pool tested even make it into double-digits on that question.

On authenticity, Trump also scores the highest. The billionaire and real estate mogul is picked by 41 percent, followed by Carson at 18 percent. Republican primary voters are more evenly split between Trump and Carson on who "cares most about people like me," with 22 percent selecting Carson and 18 percent Trump....

When asked to pick the candidate that's the most conservative among Trump, Carson, Rubio, Fiorina, Bush, Christie, Cruz and Kasich, Cruz easily wins, with 26 percent of likely primary voters picking him.

In New Hampshire, ranking as the most conservative isn't as helpful as in Iowa, where the first-in-the-nation caucus participants lean more conservative. Among voters likely to vote in the Republican primary, 57 percent said they're conservative and 37 percent called themselves moderates. Only about a quarter of the likely New Hampshire electorate described themselves as "born again" or evangelical Christians."


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