September 20, 2015
Madison Grady

Trump leads in Oklahoma, then Carson, Fiorina makes a play for third

The latest quarterly poll from SoonerPoll, Oklahoma's only non-partisan polling firm, has Donald Trump leading in the state with just under one-third of the Republican primary vote at 30.8 percent.

Ben Carson, who won the Southern Republican Leadership Conference (SRLC) Straw Poll last May in Oklahoma City, trailed in second place with 22.5 percent of Republicans.

Carly Fiorina, who has performed well in two nationally televised debates, was the third most favored among Republican voters with 8.3 percent, followed by Ted Cruz in fourth with 6.5 percent.

The next three placers included Jeb Bush, Mike Huckabee, and Marco Rubio -- all in the single digits.

It should be noted that this poll was conducted before the start of the second presidential debate held at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in California last Wednesday.  The fielding ended the night before the debate.

[QUESTION] Thinking now about the 2016 presidential election.  If the Republican presidential primary was TODAY and you were standing in the voting booth RIGHT NOW and had to make a choice, for whom would you vote? [READ IN ROTATED ORDER]

Donald Trump 30.8%
Ben Carson 22.5
Carly Fiorina 8.3
Ted Cruz 6.5
Jeb Bush 6.2
Mike Huckabee 5.0
Marco Rubio 4.1
John Kasich 2.2
Scott Walker 1.6
Chris Christie 1.0
Rand Paul 0.9
Rick Perry 0.5
Undecided 10.4

Five other candidates did not receive any votes: Jim Gilmore, George Pataki, Bobby Jindal, Lindsey Graham and Rick Santorum.  Rick Perry received one vote but has since suspended his campaign.

Interestingly, Rick Santorum, who did not receive a single vote in this poll, won the 2012 Oklahoma presidential primary with 33.8 percent of the vote with over 96,000 votes.

Mike Huckabee, whose running in the pack in this poll, was the favorite among Oklahoma Republicans eight years ago leading up to the 2008 presidential election but eventually lost out to John McCain, who polled better in head-to-head match-ups.

Trumps appeal to Republicans was focused primarily among those Republican voters who identify themselves as somewhat conservative to moderate and liberal, beating Carson and all other competitors by 10 points or more.  The Republicans who identify themselves as "very" conservative, however, were nearly split with Trump getting 28.8 percent and Carson getting 27.2 percent.  Republicans who identify themselves as very conservative are 52 percent of the primary electorate in Oklahoma.

Men favored Trump by 17 points over women, who favored Carson by four points over Trump.

Trump led by five points among evangelical voters over Carson, and 12 points among non-evangelicals.

Trumps greatest support came from the more rural parts of the state where he led by ten points or more over all of his Republican competitors in the state's three mostly rural congressional districts.  In the more urban Oklahoma City and Tulsa congressional districts, Trump was tied with Carson.

Age also created a separation between the front-runners, with Trump beating Carson by at least six points in every age group except those 65 and older who favored Carson by two points over Trump.  Roughly one-in-three voters of the Republican primary electorate are over the age of 65, the largest among the age groups.

Donald Trumps is expected to make his first visit to the Sooner State as a presidential candidate this Friday at the Oklahoma State Fair in Oklahoma City.


About the Poll

The poll of 320 likely Republican voters in Oklahoma was conducted September 1-15, 2015 from a dual frame of 82 cellphone and 238 landline users. The margin of error is plus or minus 5.48 percentage points.

Poll results were weighted by age, phone (cellphone and landline) and congressional district, and stratified to a profile of statewide likely Republican voters using a proprietary database developed by SoonerPoll. This poll conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls. A complete description of the methodology can be found here.

Madison Grady
About the Author

Madison Grady