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Harvard Poll: Trump Tops Biden by 5, DeSantis by 40

A new Harvard-Harris Poll found the majority of Americans believe the country is on the wrong track and respondents are picking former President Donald Trump over President Joe Biden and GOP primary challenger Ron DeSantis to fix it.

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Trump leads the DeSantis and the GOP primary field by 40 points and Biden by five points in the latest poll released Saturday. DeSantis also leads Biden, albeit by just 1 point.

GOP primary poll results by Harvard-Harris:

  1. Trump 52%
  2. DeSantis 12%
  3. Vivek Ramaswamy 10%
  4. Former VP Mike Pence 7%.
  5. Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley 4%
  6. Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., 2%
  7. Former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie 2%
  8. North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum 1%
  9. Former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson 1%
  10. Miami Mayor Francis Suarez less than 1%

In respective hypothetical general election presidential polling, Trump leads Biden by 5 points (45%-40%) and DeSantis leads Biden by 1 point (41%-40%).

Vice President Kamala Harris polls even worse than Biden’s 40% against both Trump (47%, +9 points) and DeSantis (41%, +2 points).

When asked if the country is on the “right” or “wrong track,” 61% of respondents said it was on the “wrong track,” with 29% saying it was on the “right track,” and only 10% saying either they “don’t know” or were “unsure.”

Responses for the poll, protracting back into February 2017, according to the poll’s earliest data point, were almost consistently about the country being on the “wrong track.”

When asked about the U.S. economy, responses for July 2023 nearly mirrored those about the country, with 62% of respondents saying it is on the “wrong track,” and again, 29% saying it is on the “right track,” and 9% responding they “don’t know,” or were “unsure.”

However, unlike answers about the country, responses to the economy being on the right or wrong track showed more variability.

Beginning in March 2018, dispositions about the economy were mostly positive. But around January-February 2020, as the start of the COVID-19 global pandemic, hopefulness for the economy took a sharp dip. That trend maintained consistency until rising in November 2020, only to fall again in June 2021.

That trend for the economy being on the right track has since been consistently low.

The Harvard University poll was conducted by The Harris Poll and HarrisX from July 19-20 among 2,068 registered voters. No margin of error was given.

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