The latest on the presidential horse race.

Christie Leads GOP Pack in North Carolina Primary Poll

PPP, 12/5-12/8

  • Christie: 19
  • Bush: 15
  • Paul: 13
  • Cruz: 12
  • Rubio: 10
  • Ryan: 7
  • Walker: 5
  • Santorum: 5
  • Jindal: 3

According to a Public Policy Polling survey, Chris Christie leads the North Carolina Republican Primary race by a four-point margin over second-place finisher Jeb Bush.

The poll, conducted in December, sampling 529 Republican primary voters, found that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie would win the state’s primary if the election were held today with 19 percent of the vote. In the previous poll taken in November, Christie led with 20 percent. Christie is the frontrunner in most states’ primary races but has not been able to extend his lead over the rest of the GOP pack beyond a few points.

Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, who has been relevant in some polls and nearly non-existent in others, finished second in the poll with 15 percent of the vote. In November, Bush was second in the race with 16 percent of the vote. Bush has been polling at 10-12 percent nationally, usually finishing in third to fifth place.

Kentucky Senator Rand Paul finished third in the poll with 13 percent of the vote, a slight improvement over the 12 percent he received in November. Fellow Tea Partier and Texas Senator Ted Cruz finished just behind Paul with 12 percent of the vote after also receiving 12 percent in November.

Florida Senator Marco Rubio placed fifth in the poll with 10 percent of the vote, the only other candidate to garner double-digits. He also received 10 percent in November’s poll.

The rest of the pack didn’t make much of a dent. Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan, who has been polling at 9-12 percent nationally, finished with just 7 percent. That’s far lower than he’s seen in Wisconsin’s neighboring states like Ohio and Michigan, suggesting he may not have enough support in the south to make a real run for the nomination.

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker finished with 5 percent of the vote after garnering just 1 percent in the previous poll. Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum finished with 5 percent after receiving 2 percent in the last poll. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal fell to 3 percent after receiving 6 percent in November. Eleven percent of respondents said they were unsure or preferred someone else, down from 13 percent a month ago.

(Image courtesy of Gage Skidmore)