Trump, Clinton lead in GOP, Democratic Primaries

September 23, 2015

A statewide poll of Texas likely voters finds that immigration and the economy are the top issues of concern for residents of the Lone Star State. The poll also found that Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton lead the Republican and Democratic primaries. Barack Obama is viewed unfavorably by a majority of Texans. Gov. Greg Abbott is seen favorably, and Sen. Ted Cruz has a more mixed favorability rating.

The Texas Pulse, a periodic survey of Texans’ opinions on a variety of cultural, economic and political issues, was conducted by Crosswind Media & Public Relations from Sep. 11-14, using a survey of 1,000 Texans. The margin of error is +/- 3 percentage points. A 2014 Texas Pulse survey was recognized by the Houston Chronicle as the most accurate poll in the governor’s race.

In a survey of 452 likely Democratic voters, Clinton leads Democrat Bernie Sanders 53 percent to 21 percent, with Sen. Joe Biden, who has not announced for president, in third with 14 percent in a hypothetical matchup.

“Despite some challenges, the Clinton name is still gold among Texas Democrats,” said Thomas Graham, Crosswind president and CEO. “Hillary’s support remains solid, particularly among minorities and women. While Sanders fares well among white and younger voters relative to his overall numbers, Hillary Clinton still beats him 2-1 in even these categories.”

Clinton even beats Sanders 52 percent to 31 percent among voters identifying themselves as liberal. The former secretary of state does best among African-Americans, with almost two thirds (65%) supporting her. Sanders’ only lead in any category is among voters identifying their ethnicity as “other.” This is a relatively small sample, however.

On the Republican side, as Crosswind announced last week, Donald Trump leads the field with 26 percent, followed by Ben Carson at 19 percent. Texas’ own Senator Ted Cruz is third with 15 percent, and Jeb Bush is fourth with 9 percent.

Issues Important to Texans

The Texas Pulse survey of key issues finds that immigration remains the top issue among voters, with 33 percent citing it as their biggest concern. This is a decidedly partisan issue, with 50 percent of Republicans saying it is their top concern, but only 10 percent of Democrats identifying it that way. The economy and jobs is a distant second at 18 percent for all voters.

Among Republicans, the economy is second (15%) and taxes and spending third (11%). Among Democrats, the biggest issues are health care (24%), economy and jobs (21%) and education (21%).

Favorability of Elected Officials

The poll tested favorability for President Barack Obama, Gov. Greg Abbott and Sen. Ted Cruz. The results were not only partisan, but starkly so. A majority of Texans (58%) see President Barack Obama unfavorably, compared to 41 percent who see him favorably. While 86 percent of Democrats see him favorably, only 10 percent of Republicans do.

Abbott fairs only slightly better among members of the other party. His overall favorability is 54 percent positive and 39 percent negative. Among Republicans, he is seen favorably by 77 percent, compared to 24 percent of Democrats who see him that way.

Sen. Ted Cruz’ favorability is almost tied: 48 percent of Texans view him favorably, but 47 percent see him unfavorably. Cruz’ favorability among Republicans is 72 percent – slightly less than the 77 percent supporting Abbott. But most stark is Democratic opposition. Whereas a quarter of Democrats see Abbott favorably, only 13 percent see Cruz favorably. Democratic opposition is strong: among the 80 percent of Democrats who oppose Cruz, 66 percent see him very unfavorably.

But Cruz and Abbott also see strong support among Hispanics. Abbott gets 49 percent favorability among Hispanics, and Cruz gets 48 percent. Hispanics also gave President Obama a 54 percent favorability rating. Graham noted that favorability does not necessarily translate to ideological agreement or votes.

“It’s clear that both parties recognize the value of engaging Hispanic voters and the results of their efforts show in the equal favorability ratings among their respective candidates,” said Graham.

Crosswind will release the complete findings of the latest Texas Pulse on Oct. 1. To receive a copy or for more information visit or email Crosswind Vice President James Bernsen at [email protected].

Contact: James Bernsen

[email protected]

(512) 497-6725