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Will Trump Pass the Ultimate Test?

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As we recently discussed, this weekend Donald Trump uttered the ultimate Republican heresy, invoking the kooky conspiracy theory that George W. Bush was president on September 11, 2001. This flies directly in the face of the rock-solid Republican orthodoxy that George W. Bush Kept Us Safe (With Notably Rare Exceptions.) Will be pay a price? Well:

PPP’s new South Carolina poll continues to find Donald Trump with a wide lead in the state. He’s at 35% to 18% each for Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, 10% for John Kasich, and 7% each for Jeb Bush and Ben Carson.

What’s striking about Trump’s support is how consistent it is across different demographic groups- he’s at 41% with ‘somewhat conservative’ voters, 40% with younger voters, 38% with men, 36% with self identified Republicans, 35% with Evangelicals, 35% with middle aged voters, 34% with non-Evangelicals, 31% with women, 30% with self identified independents, 30% with ‘very conservative’ voters, 30% with seniors, and 29% with moderates. He has a lead of some size within every single one of those groups, similar to what he was able to do in New Hampshire.

CNN has similar results. Even the polls-plus 538 analysis gives him a 74% chance of winning.

This isn’t to say that Trump is a mortal lock to win the nomination. South Carolina voters do seem to have responded to the Rubiobot’s new software, and Trump’s particularly aggressive attacks on the party he’s trying to lead might hurt him more down the road. But the fact that he can say what he did and still probably win in South Carolina is amazing in itself.

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