Rubio Tops Clinton in General 

LANSING, Mich. – Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have healthy leads in their primaries just over one week from the March 8 Michigan primary election. Thirty-three percent of likely Michigan GOP primary voters say they would vote for Trump followed by Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz tied at eighteen percent. Fifty-six percent of likely DEM primary voters say the will vote for Hillary Clinton while Sanders gets thirty-six percent according to the latest statewide poll conducted by Marketing Resource Group (MRG).

Looking towards the general election, of the three leading contenders for the GOP nomination, Trump, Cruz and Rubio, Rubio is the only one to best Clinton in a hypothetical November matchup. Both Trump and Cruz trail Clinton thirty-nine percent to forty-four percent. Rubio beats Clinton narrowly forty-three percent to forty-one percent.

“Trump and Clinton are poised for victory in their respective primaries, said Dave Doyle, executive vice president of MRG. Doyle served two terms as MI GOP State Chairman from 1991 to 1995.

The poll also showed that both Trump and Clinton had high negative ratings among all voters. Only thirty-one percent of voters had a favorable opinion of Trump, while fifty-nine percent had a negative opinion of him. Clinton was only slightly less negative with thirty-eight percent having a positive opinion of her and fifty-four percent having a negative opinion her.

“As long as the anti-Trump vote in the primary is split up between multiple candidates, Donald Trump will be the party’s nominee in November. However, Donald Trump is the only candidate liked less than Hillary Clinton. Trump will have a difficult time winning Michigan unless he repairs his image among voters,” continued Doyle. “You cannot win an election when sixty percent of the voters don’t like you.”

The results and the wording of the questions asked by MRG follow.

GOP Presidential Primary Vote

If the Republican primary for President was being held today, and the candidates were Ben Carson, Ted Cruz, John Kasich, Marco Rubio, and Donald Trump, for whom would you vote?

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DEM Presidential Primary Vote

If the Democratic primary for President was being held today, and the candidates were Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders, for whom would you vote?

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November General Election Vote

(Three separate questions)

If the election for President were being held today, and the candidates were [ROTATE:] (Hillary Clinton the Democrat) and (name Trump, Cruz, or Rubio. the Republican), for whom would you vote? [IF UNSURE/UNDECIDED, ASK:] Well, as of today, which way do you lean . . . toward [ROTATE:] (Clinton or Trump, Cruz or Rubio)?

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Name ID and perception: Here are the names of some people and groups in the news. As I read each one, please tell me if you are aware of not aware of the person. [IF AWARE, ASK:] Is your general impression of (him/her) very favorable, somewhat favorable, somewhat unfavorable, or very unfavorable (RANDOMIZE)

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MRG Michigan Poll Spring 2016

The survey of 600 likely Michigan voters was conducted by live interview February 22-27, 2016. The sample was randomly drawn from a listed sample of all registered voters with a history of voting and stratified by city and township to reflect voter turnout. In addition, quotas for gender and cell phone interviews were met within each geographic area, and extra efforts were made to reach African Americans. Thirty percent of the interviews were conducted with cell phone only or cell phone dominant households.

A sample of 600 likely voters in Michigan yields a sampling margin of error of ±4 percent with a 95 percent confidence interval. The sampling margin of error for subgroups may be higher depending on the size of the subgroup. Sample size of GOP primary voters = 217. Sample size of DEM primary voters = 218.

About Marketing Resource Group, Inc.

Lansing, Michigan-based Marketing Resource Group, Inc. ( is an award-winning PR firm representing corporate, association, nonprofit, and private clients with interests in Michigan. MRG offers expertise in public affairs, communications, political campaign management, and public opinion survey research. For more than thirty years, MRG has conducted its bi-annual omnibus Michigan Poll™, tracking the pulse of Michigan voters on key statewide public policy and political issues. MRG is the only Michigan public opinion survey research firm

that maintains nearly 30 years of trend analyses of voter attitudes related to state and national leaders, political parties, and the political and economic climate in Michigan.

Follow MRG on Twitter @mrgmichigan and on Facebook.