Although former President Donald Trump is on the hook for $83 million due to a defamation case filed by an accuser whose sordid claims he has summarily denied, his support among independent voters has only seemed to grow in the wake of the jury’s decision.
According to the latest Morning Consult survey, the GOP presidential primary front-runner has opened up a gaping 12-point lead over his likely general election rival, President Joe Biden. Independent support for Trump registered at 42% with the widely unpopular incumbent stuck at just 30%.
Trump maintained a narrow lead — 44% to 42% — among voters overall, which was slimmer than in previous polls, though the former president continues to perform well in many battleground states that are likely to have an outsized influence in the outcome of the general election.
New Bloomberg/@MorningConsult poll of Trump-Biden matchup in swing states:
— InteractivePolls (@IAPolls2022) January 31, 2024
Although Trump is technically still in a primary race against former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, his dominating lead in that contest continues to grow, with Morning Consult pollsters registering an 81% to 18% lead by the likely nominee.
Trump has frequently cited his ongoing legal trials as a net positive for his White House ambitions.
Addressing a crowd outside of a civil courtroom in New York City in October, Trump reiterated his claim that the cases against him are all politically motivated.
“If I weren’t leading in all the polls or if I weren’t running, I wouldn’t have any of these cases,” he proclaimed. “I wouldn’t be seeing you this morning, so we’ll go in and see our rogue judge and we’ll listen to this man — and I think most people get it. People are getting it. I can tell you voters are getting it because every time they give me a fake indictment I go up in the polls and that has never happened before.”
Among supporters who continue to maintain Trump was the victim of election interference four years ago, the series of criminal charges and civil cases against him over the past year are widely seen as further evidence of such partisan corruption.
Following the announcement of a federal indictment in August, conservative filmmaker Dinesh D’Souza said: “The Democrats stole the 2020 election. This indictment is an attempt to protect the thieves and legitimize the heist.”