HPU Poll: Republican Presidential Candidates Have Advantage over Clinton in Hypothetical Matchups

HIGH POINT, N.C., March 11, 2016 – The recent High Point University Poll found that amongst North Carolina likely general election voters, all of the Republican candidates would appear to have advantage over Democratic candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in hypothetical head-to-head matchups.

With Clinton running against John Kasich, governor of Ohio, Kasich would receive 53 percent of the vote while Clinton would receive 38 percent of the vote. When matched up with Donald Trump, Trump would receive 49 percent of the vote and Clinton would receive 42 percent of the vote. Nine percent are undecided.

Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas receives 4 percent more support with 47 percent of the vote and Clinton receiving 43 percent of the vote. When put up against Rubio (45 percent), he would push past Clinton (43 percent) by only 2 percent.

In a hypothetical matchup between Kasich and Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, Kasich once again receives more of the vote against the Democratic nominee with 52 percent and Sanders with 39 percent. In a matchup between Trump and Bernie Sanders, Sanders would fall short to Trump by receiving 44 percent of the vote and Trump receiving 47 percent of the vote.

Cruz and Sanders tie in a hypothetical matchup, both receiving 45 percent of the vote. However, Sanders (46 percent) is preferred to Rubio (43 percent) by 3 percent in a hypothetical matchup.

The HPU Poll also asked likely general election voters their preferences for North Carolina Senator in a hypothetical matchup. Sen. Richard Burr receives 48 percent of the vote when matched up against Democratic candidate Deborah Ross (41 percent).

When asked about their preference for North Carolina Governor in a hypothetical matchup between Gov. Pat McCrory and Roy Cooper, McCrory received slightly more support with 47 percent, while Cooper receives 45 percent of the vote.

“When it comes to thinking ahead about the candidate they would support in the general election, Gov. Kasich is particularly strong against the possible Democratic nominees,” says Dr. Martin Kifer, assistant professor of political science and director of the HPU Poll. “Among our likely voters, Republicans are doing well at all levels, but the presidential race looks like a place where the characteristics of the candidates themselves might matter quite a bit.”

Methodology: The High Point University Survey Research Center contracted SurveyUSA to interview 1,600 state of North Carolina registered voters March 9 and March 10, 2016, using landline respondents drawn from a Registration Based Sample (aka Voter List Sample) purchased from Aristotle in Washington, D.C. and a sample of other likely voters who responded on their smartphones, laptops, tablets, or other electronic devices. To be included in the sample, a voter who had registered prior to 2008 must have voted in the 2008 and 2012 presidential primaries as well as the 2014 general election; respondents registered between 2008 and 2012 voted in the 2012 presidential primary and 2014 general election; respondents who had registered between 2012 and 2014 voted in the 2014 primary or the 2014 general election; and the remainder of the sample registered between 2014 and 2016. Of the 1,576 likely November voters, 22 percent were determined to have already voted in person or by absentee ballot in the March 15, 2016 primary election. All likely voters also responded that they would certainly or probably vote in the Democratic or Republican primary. Other respondents were not considered likely primary voters.  Respondents reachable on a home telephone (78 percent of likely November voters) were interviewed on their home telephone in the recorded voice of a professional announcer. Respondents not reachable on a home telephone (22 percent of likely November voters), were shown a questionnaire on their smartphone, laptop, tablet, or other electronic device. Data are weighted toward the voter file demographic proportions for age and gender. Details from this survey are available at http://bit.ly/1XikNdW

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