The decade's most triggering comedy
Former President Donald Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis are steadily maintaining their top two spots in the Republican presidential primary, but there’s a new face coming in third place, according to the latest Real Clear Politics polling average.
Tech entrepreneur and political outsider Vivek Ramaswamy jumped ahead of former Vice President Mike Pence after the latest round of polling and now sits at 5.4% in the national polls to Pence’s 5.2%. Trump’s dominance continues in the polls as he remains at above 50% while DeSantis comes in at an average of 18.4%
Ramaswamy saw a boost in some polls this month, even hitting double digits in one Harvard/Harris poll last week, coming in at 10% and just two percentage points behind the Florida governor, who is considered to be Trump’s biggest threat from within the GOP. DeSantis’ latest polling average is his lowest since July 1 of last year, according to RCP’s co-founder and president, Tom Bevan.
Ramaswamy has also seen a slight boost in his polling in Iowa, the key first caucus state, jumping over Pence and tying with former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, according to the RCP average. In Iowa, Trump leads with 50% over DeSantis (17%), South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott (7.7%), Ramaswamy (4.3%), Haley (4.3%), Pence (3.5%), and former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (3.5%). Trump’s lead in New Hampshire, the first primary state, is slightly smaller as the former president comes in at 41% in front of DeSantis (19%), Christie (6.3%), Scott (6%), Haley (5%), Ramaswamy (3.7%), and North Dakota Governor Doug Bergum (3.7%).
Candidates are preparing for the first Republican presidential debate, which will be held in Milwaukee on August 23. So far, the seven candidates who have qualified to appear on stage are Trump, DeSantis, Ramaswamy, Scott, Haley, Christie, and Bergum. Pence and former Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson have met the polling bar set for debate participants but are still short of the required 40,000 individual donors to qualify for the stage, according to POLITICO.
Meanwhile, one of Trump’s advisers has said the former president is unlikely to participate in the debate.
“It really wouldn’t make much sense for him to go and debate right now with a bunch of folks who are down at three, four, and five percent,” Jason Miller said.
“So ultimately, President Trump will make a decision as we get closer,” he added. “He has not said anything definitive, one way or the other. I’m not expecting him to participate, though.”