Donald J. Trump, the larger than life Republican candidate who career establishment Republicans are trying to knock out by any means, again finds himself the undisputed leader in the Republican field. Dr. Ben Carson, a chief rival who was in a virtual tie with Trump four weeks ago, drops to third place, according to a new Quinnipiac University National poll released Wednesday.
Eleven months before the 2016 presidential election, Mr. Trump gets 27 percent of Republican voters today, with 17 percent for Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, 16 percent each for Carson and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas and 5 percent for former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
No other candidate, including Ohio’s perpetually angry governor whose multiple personalities have rubbed everyone the wrong way at one time or another and become his national trademark, tops 3 percent. Eight percent remain undecided.
Trump Triumphs Still
For Democrats, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton widens her lead over Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont to 60 – 30 percent, compared to 53 – 35 percent in a November Q-Poll survey. Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley has 2 percent, with 6 percent undecided.
Gov. Kasich has taken the lead in trying to sideline the Trump campaign juggernaut with negative TV ads that offer lots of negatives for Mr. Trump and no positives for him. The term-limited governor’s protestations that Trump isn’t fit to be president are having no impact on his growing standing with the Republican electorate. Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll, has an answer Camp Kasich won’t accept or understand.
“It doesn’t seem to matter what he [Trump] says or who he offends, whether the facts are contested or the ‘political correctness’ is challenged, Donald Trump seems to be wearing Kevlar,” he said.
John Kasich shot first but Donald Trump has guns of his own, and vowed to use them. In Macon, Georgia, Donald Trump took on his some of his opponents, vowing to strike back at them, most especially Gov. Kasich, with ads of his own.
“If somebody hits me, I am going to hit them back so hard. I’m going to hit them back 10 times harder – which is what we should be doing to ISIS and everybody else,” he said to audience chants of “USA, USA, USA,'” according to The Gloucester Times.
In today’s Q-Poll release, Gov. John Kasich can only muster 2 out of 100 people who support him. Of the 14 GOP candidates in the Q-Poll, only former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee registers support lower than Kasich that is above zero percent.
Another sign about who’s up and who’s down came in a Reuters/Ipsos poll. Donald Trump is in the lead nationally with 34 percent, to 16 percent for Carson, 14 percent for Ted Cruz and 11 percent for Marco Rubio.
Gov. Kasich comes in with an embarrassing 2.3 percent.
Awaiting ‘Kasichgates’ To Bloom
John Kasich has far more to worry about back home than how he’s going to “do well” in New Hampshire come February 9, when Granite State voters got to the polls. Q-Poll has support for Gov. Kasich at an embarrassing two percent, polling so low that others with similar numbers—Scott Walker of Wisconsin, Rick Perry of Texas and Bobby Jindal of Louisiana—have already dropped out.
Back home in Ohio, still a big battleground state with 18 Electoral College votes, Gov. Kasich is standing under a number of potentially catastrophic cases that have yet to fall and upend his long-shot, apple-cart campaign for president.
Gov. Kasich and his insiders should fear the fallout from voters realizing he’s not trustworthy or honest once they learn the extent to which he and his administration have tried to skirt or defy Ohio laws prohibiting political work while on the job.
Another Kasichgate waiting to strut into the light of day is funding behind-the-scenes efforts to disqualify a once-time political challenger from being on the ballot last year.
A direct result of documents obtained by Plunderbund that disclosed violations by Kasich Administration staffers who got paid while engaging in political activities, the recent awakening by Ohio media to cover the governor and his lieutenant governor’s transgressions while in office could become a factor in the national debate over who can really “land the plane,” a hackneyed platitude Mr. Kasich has adopted to differentiate himself from the rest of the Republican field.
Also waiting to explode in the governor’s face, should a Franklin County administrative judge enable it, is he and his campaign’s shadowy and likely illegal effort last year to remove potential Libertarian Party of Ohio challenger Charlie Earl from the 2014 Republican primary ballot. Camp Kasich, it’s now known from emails and other evidence gathered by Early’s attorney Mark Brown that shows the extent to which Camp Kasich wanted a clear path to reelection so it could boast of how popular a governor he is, would be revealed to have conspired with the Ohio Republican Party and actions by a long-time Kasich friend and political operative that spent in excess of $600,000 to ditch Mr. Earl.