CNN Poll: Donald Trump Holds Lead, Bernie Sanders Pulling Ahead in Iowa

Sanders and Trump AP
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Two new polls from CNN show Donald Trump holding onto the lead in Iowa, while Bernie Sanders has surged against Hillary Clinton. Iowa holds its caucus in less than two weeks, on February 1st.

In the Republican race, Trump leads Cruz by 11 points, 37-26 percent. The lead is down slightly since the last CNN poll in early December. At the time, Trump led Cruz by 13 points, 33-20.

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio is a distant third with 14 percent support.

The biggest change in the Iowa race is the implosion of neurosurgeon Ben Carson. At the beginning of December, Carson was third in Iowa with 16 percent. Today, he is a distant 4th, with just 6 percent support.

All other Republican candidates have 3 percent support or less.

Since early December, Trump has gained 4 points, Cruz has gained 6 points, and Rubio has gained 3 points.

The biggest movement, however, has been in the Democrat primary. Socialist Bernie Sanders has opened an 8-point lead over Hillary Clinton. Sanders has 51 percent support against 43 percent for Clinton.

The state of the Democrat primary is almost a complete reversal of an earlier CNN poll in early December. In that poll, Hillary led Sanders by 18 points, 54-36. The shift represents a 26-point movement towards Sanders in a little over a month.

Time may be running out for Clinton in Iowa. Almost two-thirds of Democrats, 64 percent, say they have definitely decided on a candidate. Sanders leads Clinton by 22 points on being better able to address the economy. He also leads Clinton on healthcare by 6 points.

Perhaps more troubling for Clinton, though, is the fact that Sanders leads her by 19 points on the question of which candidate best represents the “values of Democrats like yourself.”

On the Republican side, Trump leads the other candidates by wide margins on the handling of the economy and illegal immigration. Cruz has the edge on social issues. Trump, Cruz, and Rubio are tied on best being able to handle foreign policy.

Cruz and Trump are tied on the question of which candidate best represents the “values for Republicans like yourself.”

The Republican race is also more fluid than the Democrat race. Only 49 percent of Republicans say they have definitely made up their mind on whom to support.

It should be noted, though, that both polls have 6 point margin of error. That is very high for a poll. While the specific numbers may be subject to this margin, the underlying trend is very clear. Iowa is breaking for Sanders, while Trump is holding onto his lead in Iowa in a much more fluid race.