UMass Lowell Poll Shows N.H. Republicans Prefer Trump and Support Right to Abortion

Former President Donald Trump. (Official portrait.)

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With the New Hampshire presidential primary coming up this month, UMass Lowell’s Center for Public Opinion and YouGov poll results show former President Donald Trump holds a commanding lead for the Republican party’s nomination in the 2024 race for the White House, with former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley in a not-so-close second – she trails by 30 points.

Of 450 likely New Hampshire Republican primary voters surveyed, 52% would vote for Trump, while 22% signaled they would vote for Haley, who once served as Trump’s U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and was recently endorsed in the race by N.H. Gov. Chris Sununu.

“The poll results throw cold water on any traction Haley thought she had,” said UMass Lowell’s John Cluverius, the center’s director of survey research and an associate professor of political science. “Despite an endorsement from Sununu–whom the poll found enjoys an 80% favorability rating among respondents–and her attempt to thread the needle on abortion, she can’t seem to close the deal.”

Against Haley, Trump leads in every demographic category, and she fares worse among female respondents than male, he added.

Candidates trailing behind include Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, 10%; former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, 6%; entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, 4%; and former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, 1%.

The survey was conducted from Thursday, Dec. 7, through Monday, Dec. 18, and has a margin of error of plus or minus 5.4 percentage points. The first-in-the-nation N.H. primary election is Tuesday, Jan. 23.

The same poll shows voters divided on the Israel-Hamas conflict. Exactly half somewhat or strongly support the Republican nominee calling for an immediate ceasefire, while 50% somewhat or strongly oppose it. On providing U.S. aid to Israel, 46% of respondents somewhat  or strongly support it, while 54% say they somewhat or strongly oppose it.

As the Russian invasion of Ukraine nears its second anniversary, 66% of respondents say they somewhat or strongly oppose additional assistance, while 34% of respondents somewhat or strongly support it. However, voters in the sample still view Vladimir Putin negatively, with 76% holding an unfavorable view of the Russian president and 5% holding a favorable view.

Among respondents who identify as Republicans, 64% say there should be a right to get an abortion in every state.

Among poll respondents, 64% would back a constitutional amendment prohibiting candidates aged 75 or older from holding federal office. If reelected, Trump would be 78 on Inauguration Day, while Biden would be 82.

“When people stay in roles well into their 70s, they become ‘blockers’ to the next generation of leaders,” said UMass Lowell’s Catherine Rymsha, an authority on succession and talent management who is a visiting faculty lecturer in the university’s Manning School of Business.

The nonpartisan poll was independently funded by the University of Massachusetts Lowell, which has more than 16,000 students, alumni and employees from the Granite State. The survey was designed and analyzed by the university’s Center for Public Opinion and fielded by YouGov.

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