New Clemson poll: Trump still in the lead in S.C.

Donald Trump. AP/File

The latest poll is no surprise: Donald Trump is expected to win South Carolina’s Republican presidential primary Saturday.

The Clemson University Palmetto Poll found Trump with 28 percent, while his closest rival was Sen. Ted Cruz, with 19 percent.

Sen. Marco Rubio placed third with 15 percent, and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, had 9 percent, followed by Ohio Gov. John Kasich and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, who each had 6 percent.

The survey of 650 respondents this week began Sunday, the day after the Republican debate in Greenville. Its margin of error is plus or minus 3 percent.

Political science professor David Woodard, who oversaw the new poll with fellow professor Bruce Ransom, said Trump kept the top spot he held in Clemson’s November 2015 poll.

“The only question seems to be who will finish second and who will finish fourth,” Woodard said.

Asked to pick a second choice from the field if their first choice is not available, Rubio was picked by 23 percent of respondents, followed by Cruz at 18 percent.

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