Conservative Presidential Poll: Cruz, Paul, and Walker Top GOP Field

Daniel Doherty

5/7/2014 12:10:00 PM - Daniel Doherty

Why blog about another 2016 GOP presidential primary poll? A good question, of course, and one I assume most of you are asking. Answer: unlike other polls routinely conducted by the major news networks (such as ABC News, NBC News, and CNN) this survey was developed for (and exclusively taken by) conservatives. Indeed, our sister site Hot Air polled more than 3,000 of their conservative readers, many of whom will (at minimum) vote in the 2014 Republican presidential primaries if not actively campaign and donate money to their preferred candidates. (Ninety-five percent of respondents describe themselves as either “Conservative,” “Very Conservative or “Libertarian”). So while this is certainly an imperfect sample, it does give us a general sense of how grassroots Righties feel about the 2016 GOP hopefuls, and which candidates, at least right now, they are leaning toward.

The results aren’t all that surprising. Ted Cruz took first place with 29 percent of the vote; Rand Paul and Scott Walker both finished in second with 18 percent:

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What surprises me most of all, perhaps, is that more Hot Air readers would support Mitt Romney for president than Marco Rubio, Paul Ryan, or Mike Huckabee(!). Huck, for his part, has topped the GOP field in several national surveys, and yet gets very little support from Hot Air readers. Same for Marco Rubio, who has recovered somewhat from his failed amnesty push; but he, too, isn’t a top contender. Neither is Paul Ryan, for that matter, who was widely perceived as the only True Conservative on the 2012 presidential ticket. Nevertheless, he only garnered 54 total votes out of more than 3,000 cast. None of these conservative candidates, in other words, are more desirable presidential hopefuls than Mitt Romney. What gives?

Parting question: Jeb Bush and Chris Christie each received just one percent of the total vote for obvious reasons. But how many grassroots conservatives would support either one of these establishment candidates if they secured the nomination? That is, if it came down it -- and Chris Christie or Jeb Bush gets the nod over Ted Cruz or Rand Paul -- how many of them would come around, so to speak? They're certainly more desirable presidential candidates than Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, Joe Biden or Martin O’Malley, right?

That's a question I'd hope to see polled one day.