Debate Aftershock: Trump’s Grip Loosens as GOP Contenders Rise Amidst Fiery Abortion Showdown!

Following the inaugural Republican presidential primary debate last Wednesday, a recent poll indicates that three candidates have experienced an uptick in their levels of support.

Trump’s Support Has Dipped by 6 Percentage Points

The debate featured eight candidates, excluding Donald Trump, who opted out of participating due to his prominent position. Instead, he was interviewed by Tucker Carlson, an event that coincided with the debate.

According to a survey conducted by Emerson College and released on Monday, Trump’s support dipped by 6 percentage points.

Conversely, the poll demonstrates that Nikki Haley, Mike Pence, and Ron DeSantis observed a rise in their backing.

Haley, a former cabinet-level ambassador to the United Nations under the Trump administration, saw her support swell from 2 percent to 7 percent based on the poll’s findings.

“Can’t We All Agree?”

Haley’s debate performance garnered praise from conservative commentators, explicitly noting her discourse on subjects such as abortion, foreign policy, appropriations earmarks, and Social Security reform.

During the debate, Haley voiced, “Can’t we all agree that we should ban late-term abortions? Can’t we all agree that we should encourage adoptions? Can’t we all agree that doctors and nurses who don’t believe in abortions shouldn’t have to perform them?”

Her candid stance was commended by The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board, owned by conservative media tycoon Rupert Murdoch, who hailed her for her candor with the audience.

Likewise, Pence, Trump’s former running mate in two previous elections, witnessed his support ascend from 3 percent to 7 percent according to the poll.

The Abortion Debate

During the debate, Pence’s endorsement of a six-week abortion limit, in contrast to Haley’s position, drew attention.

He also criticized Vivek Ramaswamy, a pro-Trump candidate, for his lack of prior elected office experience.

The poll reveals that Ramaswamy’s support experienced a marginal drop from 10 percent to 9 percent, despite being widely perceived as the “winner” of the debate. However, as outlined in the poll, he maintains a lead over Pence and Haley.

In response to inquiries, Ramaswamy’s spokesperson referred to a Kaplan Strategies poll, which positioned him with 13 percent support, ahead of DeSantis and second only to Trump in the overall race.

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DeSantis, who holds second place behind Trump, saw a more modest rise in his backing, moving from 10 percent to 12 percent. DeSantis, however, faced criticism for failing to capture attention during the debate, with most other candidates directing their criticism at Ramaswamy.

The subsequent GOP debate was slated for September 27 at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum in Simi Valley, California.

Conducted between August 25 and 26, 2023, the poll surveyed 1,000 registered voters, with a margin of error of +/- 3 percentage points. Emerson College’s polling holds an “A-” grade from FiveThirtyEight, with a Democratic skew of 0.3 percent.

As of now, campaigns for Trump, Haley, Pence, and DeSantis have not yet issued any comments on the poll.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments!

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Source: Emerson College Polling