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Politics

Field Poll shows Trump leads Cruz in California




In this file photo, Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), listen to the national anthem before the start of the CNN, Salem Media Group, The Washington Times Republican Presidential Primary Debate on the campus of the University of Miami on March 10, 2016 in Coral Gables, Florida. A new Field Poll released Thursday found 39 percent of likely GOP voters in California back Trump, while 32 percent support Cruz.
In this file photo, Republican presidential candidates Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), listen to the national anthem before the start of the CNN, Salem Media Group, The Washington Times Republican Presidential Primary Debate on the campus of the University of Miami on March 10, 2016 in Coral Gables, Florida. A new Field Poll released Thursday found 39 percent of likely GOP voters in California back Trump, while 32 percent support Cruz.
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A new poll finds Donald Trump has a 7 point lead overall in California, although his popularity shifts from region to region.

That's according to the latest Field Poll of 1,400 registered voters out today.

As the Associated Press reports:

The poll released Thursday found 39 percent of likely GOP voters back Trump, while 32 percent support Cruz, 18 percent support Ohio Gov. John Kasich and 11 percent are undecided or plan to support someone else.

But the poll found significant regional differences, a noteworthy factor since 159 of California's 172 delegates to the Republican National Convention will be decided by who wins each of the state's 53 congressional district races.

Cruz leads in Los Angeles County and the Central Valley/Sierra areas, while Trump leads in other areas of Southern California and the San Francisco Bay Area. Kasich has his strongest showing in the San Francisco Bay Area, the poll found.

The poll also reported that many of Trump's supporters here are the same voters who backed Arnold Schwarzenegger for governor in 2003, according to AP.

These regional differences could affect the outcome of the primaries, according to Field Poll Director Mark DeCamillo. 

"If you have big regional differences, which is what the poll does indicate, even if you lose the statewide vote you could accrue a lot of delegates," he said. "Cruz right now is ahead in L.A. County, there's quite a few congressional districts there, so even if the numbers never change, and he loses statewide, he's going to probably walk away with quite a few delegates in California."

DeCamillo found the amount of disagreement among Republicans unusual. Should Trump, Cruz or Kasich nab the nomination, about a third of the electorate reported they would be "dissatisfied or upset" in each case.

"You don't usually see that level of antipathy toward the opposing candidate. Usually they join together and hold hands after the nominee is known," DeCamillo said. "So I think there's a great amount of dissension within the party more than usual, and it's going to be interesting to see how that plays out, especially if someone does not win a first ballot majority at the Republican Convention. It's going to be hard, I think, for the GOP to reach a consensus."   

For more on the topic, listen to Take Two's interview with Mark DeCamillo, director of the Field Poll, by clicking the blue audio player above.