Poll: Clinton Leads the Pack in Early Look at 2016

Thursday, 07 Mar 2013 08:10 AM

By Lisa Barron

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Hillary Clinton would easily beat three potential Republican challengers if the 2016 presidential election were held today, a new national poll released Thursday showed.

Clinton would defeat New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie 45 to 37 percent, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin 50 to 38 percent, and Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida 50 to 34 percent, the Quinnipiac University survey revealed.

Vice President Joe Biden and New York’s Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo would not do nearly as well, the poll finds. Biden would beat both Ryan and Rubio by much smaller margins but lose to Christie by 3 percentage points, while Cuomo would lose to both Christie and Ryan and tie with Rubio.

“Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton would start a 2016 presidential campaign with enormous advantages,” said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute.

“She obviously is by far the best known and her more than 20 years in the public spotlight allows her to create a very favorable impression on the American people.”

But Brown pointed out that Clinton was in a similar situation the last time she ran for the White House. “She had very good poll numbers in 2006 looking toward the 2008 election before she faced a relative unknown in Barack Obama.”

Other findings show that 60 percent of voters polled disapprove of the job Democrats in Congress are doing compared to 32 percent who approve, while the disapproval rate for Republicans in Congress is 71 percent, compared to 20 percent who approve.

President Barack Obama, meanwhile, has a 45 percent approval, 46 percent job disapproval score, similar to last month’s 46 to 45 percent score, but down from his post-election high of 53 to 40 percent in December.

The telephone survey of 1,944 registered voters was conducted from Feb. 27 to March 4 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.2 percentage points.

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