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Trump takes huge lead in 2024 matchups

Former President Donald Trump would be the frontrunner for the Republican nomination if he chooses to enter the 2024 race, according to a Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll survey released exclusively to “The Hill.”

The news comes as various polls put President Joe Biden below 35 percent and Kamala Harris with the worst numbers ever for a Vice President.

Nearly six in 10 Republican voters surveyed say they would vote to put the former president back on the ballot in 2024, suggesting the party is ready and willing to give Trump another chance after his 2020 loss to President Joe Biden.

No other potential 2024 Republican candidate comes close to matching Trump. Former Vice President Mike Pence notches a distant second place with 13 percent support among GOP voters, while Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a rising star in the Republican Party, scored only 9 percent support in a primary field that includes Trump. Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) are tied for fourth place, garnering 3 percent support each.

“While defeated candidates rarely come back, Trump has a strong lead in the Republican primary, especially among the most dedicated Republicans,” Mark Penn, the co-director of the survey, said.

Since leaving the White House in January, Trump has both publicly and privately toyed with the notion of mounting a 2024 presidential run. But in recent weeks, he has begun to signal that he may be more likely to run again than not. He’s ramped up his media appearances and press statements, and he’s planning upcoming rallies in Georgia and Iowa, the first-in-the-nation presidential caucus state.

When Trump wasn’t included in the lineup of potential presidential contenders, Pence took the top spot among Republican voters with 32 percent support in the poll. DeSantis’s support rose to 20 percent, putting him in second place, while Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) bypassed both Haley and Rubio to take third place, with 14 percent support.

Another poll last week showed Trump leading President Biden and Harris by 10-14 points should he face one of them.

–Alan Goforth | Metro Voice