A new Marquette Law School Poll national survey found that both former President Donald Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis have pulled strongly ahead of Democratic President Joe Biden.
Trump performs 1% better against Biden than DeSantis, according to the poll, which was taken before DeSantis formally got into the race on May 24, 2023.
According to the poll, Biden “trails Republican former President Donald Trump by 5 percentage points among registered voters, with 52% for Trump and 47% for Biden. Biden also trails Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis by 4 percentage points, with 52% for DeSantis and 48% for Biden.”
The poll found that “many voters demonstrate reluctance to choose between either pair of candidates. When voters are given the choice of Biden, Trump, someone else, or not voting, 34% say Biden, 41% say Trump, 19% say someone else, and 7% say they won’t vote. When voters are given the same choices involving Biden and DeSantis, 37% say Biden, 38% say DeSantis, 18% say someone else, and 7% say they won’t vote.”
In other words, “with the options to vote for someone else or not to vote included in the question, 26% avoid choosing between Biden and Trump and 25% avoid picking Biden or DeSantis. In both matchups, the fact of relatively high percentages saying they would vote for ‘someone else’ or would not vote indicates the potential for volatility in coming months as candidate choices are clarified,” the pollster found.
The Marquette poll is generally considered the most credible Wisconsin poll, although it was notably wildly wrong in 2016, predicting a strong Hillary Clinton victory over Trump.
“Just among those who initially avoid choosing between Biden and Trump, when they are asked whom they would choose if they had to choose, 51% prefer Biden and 47% pick Trump. Just among those reluctant to choose between Biden and DeSantis, when pushed to make a choice, 42% support Biden and 58% back DeSantis,” the poll says.
The latest Marquette Law School Poll’s national survey was conducted May 8-18, 2023.
The poll has a margin of error of +/-4.1 percentage points.
“Both Biden and Trump are seen more unfavorably than favorably among registered voters nationwide, with Biden at 37% favorable and 60% unfavorable. Trump is seen favorably by 38% and unfavorably by 59%. While Biden and Trump are virtually universally familiar to voters, 23% say they haven’t heard enough to give a favorability rating for DeSantis, who is viewed favorably by 30% and unfavorably by 47%,” the poll said.
“Partisans are quite positive toward their party’s candidates and very negative to the other party’s candidates. Independents regard all three candidates more unfavorably than favorably,” according to the poll.