Friday, February 23, 2024

CBS News poll: South Carolina Republicans give Trump large lead over Haley ahead of 2024 primary

It turns out not all politics is local.

In the 2024 Republican primary in South Carolina election, Most voters approve of Nikki Haley’s time as the state’s governor, but also say it doesn’t matter to them that she’s from the state — and instead say they’re considering the party’s nomination to nationally.

So for this and many other reasons, Donald Trump has a very big advantage here, just as he has with the Republicans nationally.

Additionally, nearly half of the party’s voters here identify as “MAGA” — in similar numbers to Republicans nationally — and they don’t think Haley is part of that movement.

Looking ahead, Trump voters don’t appear open to change in the coming weeks — nearly nine in ten are “firmly decided” — leaving Haley’s arguments about things like electability or chaos to struggle to find an echo.



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Further denying any home state advantage, Trump gets better marks in retrospect: His approval rating for his term as president is more than 20 points higher than Haley’s as governor.


Trump’s range of advantages includes handily beating Haley by being seen as “fighting for people like you” — a move that has been a marker of his support in polls and early primaries.

Echoing primary voters other states, most also describe Trump as “prepared” and a “strong leader” and on top of that, “tough.” This is comparatively less the case for Haley, even if she has the advantage of being considered “likeable”.



But many of Haley’s campaign arguments fail to resonate. Most Trump voters don’t see his legal fights as a reason they might consider Haley instead.

As revealed in a CBS News poll Iowa And New Hampshiremore voters here say Trump is fit to be president if convicted of a charge than say he is not.



Most do not view criticism of Trump’s mental health as fair.


And voters tend to think that Trump has the best chance of beating Joe Biden. (This also sounds like voters nationally.)

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Then, looking to the future, voters believe that Trump’s policy approaches are more likely to be effective. Most think they would be better off financially with him, unlike Haley. Although most think both would make the U.S.-Mexico border more secure, an overwhelming number of people believe Trump would do it. And others believe Trump would limit U.S. military involvement abroad. (When they do, they vote for him.)




The evangelical makeup of South Carolina’s electorate also helps Trump. These voters have always made up a significant part of his base and he easily wins their support. This is seen, among other things, on the issue of abortion. More people think Trump than Haley would support a national ban on abortion.

Finally, this doesn’t seem like a voting choice driven by the opinion of who is closest to the party “establishment” and who is in charge, even though there were campaign speeches on these themes. Both Haley and Trump are considered “part of the Republican establishment.” This is especially true for Haley, but about six in ten people also describe Trump this way. And those who say this about Trump generally view it as a positive.

This CBS News/YouGov survey was conducted among a representative sample of 1,483 registered voters in South Carolina between February 5 and 10, 2024, including 1,004 likely Republican primary voters. The sample was weighted by gender, age, race, education, and geographic region based on the U.S. Census current population, as well as past votes. The margin of error is ±3.0 points for the overall sample and ±4.4 points for likely Republican primary voters.

Main lines

Note: The content and images used in this article is rewritten and sourced from



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