The fight for the Republican presidential nomination is wide open, but only two GOP candidates currently take the fight to likely Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, according to a new poll.
The Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday found the GOP field split evenly between former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, former neurosurgeon Ben Carson, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. Each earns 10% in a poll of potential Republican primary voters and caucus-goers.
Against Clinton though, only Rubio, and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul—who polls at 7% nationally among Republicans—would pose a threat if the election were held today. Clinton scores 46% to 42% against Paul, and 45% to 41% against Rubio, the poll found. All other Republicans poll multiples behind Clinton.
The national survey holds limited predictive value in a race that will start off as a contest among early-state activists, but it will contribute to the culling process for the first GOP debate. Fox News, which is hosting the Aug 6. gathering, will invite the top 10 Republican candidates based on an average of national surveys.
Under the Fox News rules, the rest of the debate stage, according to the Quinnipiac poll, would include Paul, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, reality TV host Donald Trump, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former HP CEO Carly Fiorina, and Ohio Gov. John Kasich. Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, and former Texas Gov. Rick Perry would be among those excluded.
On the Democratic side, Clinton leads with 57% of potential Democratic primary voters and caucus-goers, followed by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders with 15% and Vice President Joe Biden, who has not indicated he will run, with 9%. Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who is set to launch his campaign on Saturday, polls at just 1%.
A majority of voters—53 %—believe that Clinton is not trustworthy, but they give her high marks on leadership and caring about people like them. Rubio and Paul perform best among voters on those categories, while Bush, who is expected to announce raising as much as $100 million for his presidential bid next month, faces skepticism from voters, a plurality of whom believe he doesn’t care about the needs and problems of people like them.
The Quinnipiac survey of 1.711 registered voters—including 679 Republican and 748 Democrats—was conducted from May 19-26, 2015. The overall sample as a margin of error of ±2.4 percentage points, while the Republican primary figures has a margin of error of ±3.8 points and the Democratic primary has a margin of error of ±3.6 percentage points.