Ahead of Super Tuesday on March 5, Virginia voters appear to be leaning heavily in favor of Donald Trump in the Republican presidential primaries, although he does not enjoy as much support in a hypothetical matchup against President Joe Biden in the general election.

2024 General Election: Forty-seven percent of Virginia voters chose Biden compared to 43% who chose Trump, results of the latest Roanoke College poll, which was conducted by The Institute for Policy and Opinion Research between Feb. 11 and Feb. 19, showed. The poll surveyed 705 adult residents from the state.

If Trump were to be replaced with South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley as the presidential candidate, she would prevail over Biden with a 49%-40% margin.

In an interesting take, the percentage of respondents who said they would consider voting for an independent candidate in the Nov. 5 election increased by five points from last November to 50%.

When probed about the most important election issues, 27% mentioned jobs and the economy, while immigration, inflation and abortion, respectively. were mentioned by 17%, 13% and 9% of the respondents.

“Our state is generally considered either a swing state or one that leans a bit to the left. Biden’s favorability rating of 35% now compared to 37% four years ago is relatively unchanged, but his unfavorability rating (61% now compared to 37% in 2020) has nearly doubled and nearly matches Trump’s favorable/unfavorable ratings in 2020 and in this 2024 poll,” said David Taylor, director of IPOR and professor of mathematics at Roanoke College.

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GOP Primaries: Despite Haley’s better standing than Trump in hypothetical matchups against Biden, Virginians appear to be throwing their weight behind the latter in the Republican presidential primary, which will be held on March 5.

Trump led Haley by a margin of 75% to 15%, while 8% said they would vote for someone else. Since November, Trump’s support has swelled by 24% and Haley’s has increased by 5%, as other candidates, including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and businessman Vivek Ramaswamy dropped out of the race.

When asked for their second choice for the nominee, 6% picked Trump, 25% chose Haley and 56% said they would prefer someone else.

About 56% of the respondents said they were very or somewhat likely to vote on Super Tuesday. Considering only likely voters, Trump’s lead over Haley shrank to eight points (51%-43%).

“Trump has a 62-point lead among Republicans and Haley has a 10-point lead among independents, so while a Trump victory is the likely outcome, Haley will capture several of Virginia’s 48 delegates up for grabs,” said Taylor.

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