Poll dates: Oct. 14-17, 2015, 440 likely Republican Primary voters, 4.7 margin of error
10/20/15, "Donald Trump tops Franklin-Pierce/Herald poll at 28 percent in N.H.," Boston Herald, Chris Villani
"Donald Trump remained the clear front-runner in New Hampshire, and retired neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson surged into second place among likely Republican primary voters, according to the latest Franklin Pierce University/Boston Herald Granite State GOP primary poll.
- Franklin Pierce/Herald Republican Presidential Poll Results (pdf)
- Franklin Pierce/Herald Republican Presidential Poll Tables (pdf)
"It's great news," Trump said on Herald Radio this morning. "It's like a movement."
Trump, calling into the "Morning Meeting" show right after the poll results were announced, said voters are getting to know him. "I really have bonded with the people of New Hampshire," he added.
He also continued his attack against rival Jeb Bush, who he has sparred with in recent days over the legacy of Bush’s brother, former President George W. Bush, who was in office during the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
“The statement was made that ‘under my brother, we were safe,’” Trump said. “But I said ‘wait a minute, we weren’t safe because the World Trade Center just came down.’ It was the greatest attack in the history of this country, so you can’t say we were safe.”
Trump added he himself is itching to get into the Oval Office.
"I want to put my brain to work....We have so many problems and we have no spirit as a country," Trump said. "Obamacare is a disaster...people can't afford it. I will appeal and replace it."
As for the poll, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina checked in third with 10 percent support, followed by Bush at 9 percent, Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio at 6 percent each, and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz at 5 percent.
In addition to topping the poll, Trump and Carson also made significant gains in favorability. “The Donald” holds a 55 percent “favorable” rating - up nine points from the August survey. Carson has the highest favorability rating of the deep Republican field at 69 percent, a 14 point gain from the last time the poll was conducted. Fiorina (60 percent), Rubio (59 percent), and Bush (57 percent) also enjoyed high favorability ratings.
The candidates with the highest unfavorables include former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee at 47 percent, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham at 46 percent, former New York Gov. George Pataki at 46 percent, and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum at 43 percent. The always-polarizing Trump also carries a substantial unfavorable rating at 42 percent.
An increasing number of GOP voters feel it’s likely that Trump will eventually be the party’s nominee: 36 percent said he was most likely to be the Republican candidate, compared to 16 percent in August. Bush, who had been the poll’s odds on favorite in August, came in second with 16 percent saying he is most likely to be the general election candidate. 10 percent said they feel Carson will win the nomination, up from 1 percent in August.
As Trump and Carson rise, several candidates saw significant dips in support relative to the August survey. Kasich dropped to 6 percent from 12 percent in August. Cruz went from 10 percent in August to 5 percent in the latest poll and Bush dropped from 13 percent support to 9 percent.
With a little less than four months until voters go to the polls in the first in the nation primary, the electorate remains fluid. Two-thirds of likely Republican primary voters say they could change their mind between now and Feb. 8, with only 33 percent saying they are firm in their choices. 56 percent of Trump supporters say they could change their mind, and less than half of the total survey- 45 percent - say they are following the election very closely."