Republican presidential candidate and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has blown past Donald Trump and Ben Carson in the critical primary state of Iowa to reach the coveted top spot, according to new poll results released Saturday.
A new Bloomberg Politics/DesMoines Register poll shows that Cruz is favored by 31 percent of those likely to attend the Iowa Republican caucuses, scheduled to take place Feb. 1, according to the Huffington Post.
The numbers show a 21-point leap since the Bloomberg/Des Moines Register October poll and the biggest jump of any candidate in the last five presidential caucuses in Iowa, the report says.
Trump follows 10 points behind in second place with 21 percent of the vote, and Carson, who has seen the largest decrease in support since October, is in third with 13 percent. Fla. Sen. Marco Rubio receives 10 percent of the vote, while Jeb Bush nabs just 6 percent.
Cruz’s jump comes mostly as a result of Carson’s loss of support from evangelical voters, the report says. “Forty-five percent of evangelical conservatives stated their support for Cruz in the poll. Evangelicals make up half of the Republican voting block in the Iowa caucus,” says the report.
With those numbers, no wonder Trump was throwing jabs at Cruz and the Des Moines Register. During a rally in Des Moines, Iowa, on Friday night, he called the newspaper “the worst.” At the same rally, Trump also condemned Cruz for failing to support “subsidies for ethanol,” an important business in Iowa, because of his connections to major oil companies in his home state of Texas.
Then, on Sunday, he sought to defend himself against questions that Cruz raised about his judgment when it comes to responding to terrorists.
“I have better judgment than Ted,” he told CNN’s Jake Tapper. He also went after Cruz on social media.
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Lynette Holloway is a contributing editor at The Root. The New York-based writer is a former New York Times reporter and associate editor at Ebony magazine.