Real-estate developer Donald Trump is being criticised left and right for disparaging Sen. John McCain’s (R-Arizona) military record, but the controversy has yet to affect his standing in the polls.
A new Monmouth University poll of GOP voters in Iowa, released Monday, found Trump in second place with 13% of the vote — behind only Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s (R) 22%.
Trump already surged to first place in a number of national polls, but he has lagged a bit in Iowa. Accordingly, his second-place showing here doesn’t represent a drop.
However, what’s even more interesting is that the pollster said there was no difference between Trump’s support before and after last weekend’s controversy. Trump initially claimed at an event in Iowa that McCain, who was held captive for more than five years during the Vietnam War, was not a war hero. He quickly reversed himself, but the comment still ignited a media firestorm.
“Trump’s statement about John McCain’s status as a war hero, made Saturday morning at the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, IA, generated almost universal backlash from his rivals,” the Monmouth write-up of the poll said, “but does not seem to have had an immediate impact on his support among Hawkeye State Republicans.”
The statement continued: “In interviews conducted Thursday and Friday, Trump garnered 13% of the vote to 19% for Walker. This is only slightly different than results from the Saturday and Sunday interviews, which put Trump at 13% to 25% for Walker.”
Of course, it might be too soon to conclude that Trump’s presidential campaign will escape unscathed from the controversy. The poll’s sample size of voters aware of Trump’s remarks was likely relatively small, and the media fallout is ongoing.
View the full survey write-up below:
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