Ron DeSantis, Mike Pence and Haley are all in tight race for president

Ron DeSantis, Mike Pence and Haley are all in tight race for president

The presidential election in 2024 is over a year and a half away, but there are three leading candidates locked in close battles in the polls and the betting odds. The three candidates have a major shift according to the new polling data.

What Happened: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has been moving ahead in the Republican race against former President Donald Trump for many months. As Trump faces a possible indictment and arrest, DeSantis is fading away.

DeSantis has risen in most polls to be ahead or even ahead of Trump this week. Trump has officially announced his candidacy, and DeSantis hasn't announced his official plans.

A new poll from Morning Consult shows DeSantis with only 26% support in a hypothetical Republican primary election. This is the lowest level for DeSantis since December.

The Morning Consult poll showed that Trump had 54% of support.

The two leading candidates are well ahead of other current and potential candidates. Mike Pence, the former Vice President, was third with 7% of the support. Nikki Haley, who is officially running in 2024, is fourth with 4%. The former Congresswoman Liz Cheney ranked fifth with 3% of the vote.

When asked about the second choice for president, DeSantis fared much better. DeSantis received 46% of the vote for the second choice from those who picked Trump first. Pence was second with 17% and Haley third with 6%.

When asked about the second choice for the president from those who didn't vote for DeSantis first, Trump received 43% of the vote. Pence and Haley were second and third at 16% and 15% respectively.

In hypothetical matchups against President Joe Biden, DeSantis received 41% of the vote compared to 43% for Biden. Trump also got 41% of the vote in a hypothetical matchup with Biden, who got 44% of the vote.

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Trump received 97% of the vote as the first or second choice, which is why it is important to add up the results. DeSantis got 72% of the option as the first or second choice.

The poll results differ from recent ones that show DeSantis with strong support and also from the betting odds that DeSantis is better at 300 compared to Trump's 350.

The case between Trump and DeSantis could be heated up with the indictment of the former president. DeSantis has stayed out of it and has not taken the opportunity to push on Trump, other than one quote about hush money to a pornstar. The Florida governor was asked if he would help extradite the former president. DeSantis downplayed the case instead with comments about the politicization of the district attorney's office in New York.

A report from Politico said DeSantis was not planning to get involved in the political indictment.

I have no interest in getting involved in some sort of manufactured circus by some Soros DA. I have got real issues that I have to deal with here in the state of Florida, DeSantis said.

The Morning Consult poll saw Biden's approval rating hit his lowest level since July 2022, according to a poll from the Associated Press. Only 38% of the voters approve of Biden in the new poll, down from 45% in February and 41% in January.

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Photo: Courtesy of Matt Johnson and Gage Skidmore on flickr.