Dana Blanton, Fox News, July 17, 2015
The latest Fox News national poll finds another reshuffling in the race for the 2016 Republican nomination, as Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker gets a post-announcement bump and businessman Donald Trump claims more of the spotlight.
Among Republican primary voters, Trump captures 18 percent. He’s closely followed by Walker at 15 percent and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush at 14 percent. No one else reaches double-digits.
Support for Trump is up seven percentage points since last month and up 14 points since May. He’s also the candidate GOP primary voters say they are most interested in learning more about during the debates.
Walker’s up six points since he officially kicked off his campaign. That bump gets him back to the support he was receiving earlier this year. In March, he was also at 15 percent.
Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul gets eight percent, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio receives seven percent, former neurosurgeon Ben Carson comes in at six percent, and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee get four percent a piece.
Trump’s June 16 announcement speech included provocative comments on illegal immigration that people are still talking about a month later, including the suggestion that the Mexican government is sending criminals and rapists to the United States. Whatever the blowback, his views resonate with many: 44 percent of voters think Trump is “basically right” on the issue. A 53-percent majority disagrees. Among Republican primary voters, 68 percent say he is right.
There’s been a major shift in the last five years in how voters want to handle illegal immigrants currently working in the United States. Today 64 percent favor setting up a system for them to become legal residents, up from 49 percent in 2010. And now 30 percent favor deportation, down from 45 percent five years ago.
Compared to 2010, support for setting up a system for legalization is up 21 points among Democrats, 11 points among independents and 8 points among Republicans.
The top concerns about illegal immigration are strain on the government and, increasingly, crime. The poll shows 55 percent of voters are very concerned about illegal immigrants overburdening government services. That’s down from 61 percent who felt that way in 2006.
Fifty percent are very concerned about increased crime associated with illegal immigration. That’s up from 39 percent almost 10 years ago. Views are about the same when voters are asked about illegal immigration leading to an increase in terrorism: 50 percent are very concerned, up from 34 percent in 2006.
After being on the campaign trail for about a month, how do voters feel about the Donald? Fifty-four percent dismiss him as “just a loud mouth.” Yet just over a third–34 percent–admire Trump because “he’s got guts.” That jumps to 59 percent among GOP primary voters.