CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Republican Donald Trump will most likely win big in West Virginia’s GOP primary on Tuesday, while the finish for the Democratic presidential race is going to be much closer with U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont) having the edge, according to new numbers from the MetroNews West Virginia Poll.
Among likely West Virginia Republican voters, 57 percent said they would support Trump if the primary election were held today while 25 percent backed U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), 14 percent went for Ohio Governor John Kasich and four percent were not sure.
Repass Research and Strategic Consulting conducted the poll between Apr. 22 and May 2 prior to Cruz’s decision to suspend his presidential campaign following his loss this past Tuesday to Trump in Indiana. Kasich ended his presidential campaign a day later.
In West Virginia, “Trump leads among men and women, voters of all age categories and among independents,” said Rex Repass, CEO of Repass Research and director of the MetroNews West Virginia Poll.
In the Democratic presidential race, 47 percent of likely Democratic voters backed Sanders, 43 percent said they supported Hillary Clinton, former U.S. Secretary of State, and 11 percent were not sure.
Sanders’ strength is among people between the ages of 18 and 34.
“The key, of course, for Sanders is a high turnout with young voters, while Clinton’s support is generally older, those with a college degree or post-graduate degree and upper income Democrats,” Repass said.
The poll numbers included registered party members along with unaffiliated voters most likely to choose a particular party’s ballot. The sample size was 315 for Democrats and 228 for Republicans, Repass Research officials said, with an overall statistical error size of +/-4.0 percentage points.
Back in February, in a much more crowded Republican presidential field, Trump still lead the way with 40 percent in the poll. Kasich finished 5th behind Cruz, U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida) and Dr. Ben Carson.
Three months ago, the MetroNews West Virginia Poll showed a much larger difference between Sanders, 57 percent, and Clinton, 29 percent, with 14 percent not sure.
The results from the MetroNews West Virginia Poll for the West Virginia gubernatorial race, including hypothetical matchups against Senate President Bill Cole (Mercer, 06), the likely Republican gubernatorial nominee, were released Thursday.
Created in Jan. 1980, the West Virginia Poll is a non-partisan survey of public opinion.
Early voting ahead of the May primary election continues through Saturday. On Tuesday, polls will be open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.