Marquette Law Poll: Cruz gains in Wisconsin on narrowed field

Sanders extends lead in Democratic race

Trump and Cruz
Ted Cruz (right) has gained on Donald Trump (left) in Wisconsin, according to the latest Marquette Law Poll.

Ted Cruz benefitted from the narrowing Republican presidential field among likely Wisconsin voters, according to the latest Marquette Law School Poll.

Trump and Cruz
Ted Cruz (right) has gained on Donald Trump (left) in Wisconsin, according to the latest Marquette Law Poll.

He is in the lead among likely Wisconsin Republican primary voters polled last week, with 40 percent support. Donald Trump had 30 percent, while John Kasich had 21 percent in the survey. In February, Trump had 30 percent, Cruz had 19 percent and Kasich had 8 percent. Marco Rubio, Ben Carson and Jeb Bush have dropped out since the last poll, when they totaled 31 percent of the vote.

In the Democratic primary, Bernie Sanders had 49 percent of respondents’ support, gaining ground on Hillary Clinton, who garnered 45 percent. Sanders had 44 percent in February, while Clinton had 43 percent among Wisconsin voters.

The latest Marquette Law Poll included 1,405 registered voters who were interviewed from March 24 to March 28, half on landlines and half on cell phones. Republican results were based on 471 likely voters, with a margin of error of +/-5.8 percent. Democratic results were based on 405 likely voters, with a margin of error of +/-6.3 percent. The overall margin of error was +/-3.3 percent.

In the Wisconsin Supreme Court race, Rebecca Bradley had 41 percent support in March, while JoAnne Kloppenburg had 36 percent of respondents’ support. And 18 percent of those polled were undecided in the Supreme Court race. In February, the pair was tied at 30 percent.

Clinton-Sanders
Bernie Sanders extended his lead on Hillary Clinton among Wisconsin voters in March.

“That’s a little bit of an extension of what was a 1 or 2 point race a little over a month ago, but there’s still a good percent undecided,” said Charles Franklin, professor of law and public policy and director of the Marquette Law School Poll.

Among likely voters in the Marquette Law Poll, 54 percent said they would vote in the Republican presidential primary, while 46 percent said they would vote in the Democratic presidential primary. Among Republicans voting in the GOP primary, 1 percent planned to cross over and vote in the Democratic race, while 5 percent of Democrats planned to vote in the Republican primary.

Franklin said Wisconsin’s April 5 primary is likely to draw a lot of voters.

“We should see a really high turnout here,” he said. “It’s really conceivable we could even push past (40 percent).”

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Molly Dill, former BizTimes Milwaukee managing editor.

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