Topeka One week before the March 5 presidential caucuses in Kansas, Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton are leading their respective rivals, but more than a third of all potential caucus-goers say they’re still undecided, according to a new survey by Fort Hays State University.
Among voters who said they intend to vote in the Republican caucuses, 26 percent said they are supporting Trump, although 39 percent said they are still undecided.
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, with 14 percent, and Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, at 13 percent, are in a close race for second place. Ben Carson and Ohio Gov. John Kasich each drew 3 percent.
Among Democrats, the survey showed 44 percent of potential caucus-goers are still undecided. But among those expressing a preference, 33 percent said they favored Clinton, and 23 percent said they favor Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
The survey included responses from 440 Kansas adults who said they intend to vote in the upcoming caucuses with an overall margin of error of 5 percentage points. But it did not break down that number by party or provide separate margins of error for the two samples.
But when the entire sample is pooled together, Trump and Clinton showed nearly identical levels of support, with 16 percent of the entire sample saying they support Trump, 15 percent saying they support Clinton, and 40 percent undecided.
In head-to-head matchups, though, the poll showed what most people would expect in a solidly Republican state: Kansas voters prefer any of the Republican candidates over either of the Democratic candidates.
The only exception to that is a potential matchup between Trump and Sanders. There, the poll showed, Sanders had a 1 percentage point edge over the New York billionaire, 43-42 percent, with 15 percent undecided.
But Trump holds a 10-point lead over Clinton, 46-36 percent, with 18 percent undecided.
The poll showed that if the general election were held today, the strongest Republicans in the field would be Cruz and Rubio.
Rubio leads Clinton, 51-32 percent, while Cruz leads the former Secretary of State, 49-35 percent.
Both Rubio and Cruz lead Sanders in a hypothetical matchup, but by slightly smaller margins: Rubio, 46-36 percent over Sanders; and Cruz, 44-38 percent.
The survey also asked Kansans to rate the performance of Gov. Sam Brownback and President Barack Obama.
It showed Brownback’s overall unfavorable ratings have not changed since a similar Fort Hays State University poll was conducted in October, with 69 percent saying they are either very or somewhat dissatisfied with his job performance. But within that group, the number saying they are “very dissatisfied” grew 5 percentage points, to 53 percent.
Only 21 percent said they were very or somewhat satisfied with Brownback’s job performance, which is up slightly from October.
That’s a lower job approval rating than President Obama’s. The poll showed 34 percent are either very or somewhat satisfied with his performance, up six points from the October poll, while 60 percent are very or somewhat dissatisfied.