Cruz, Kasich Creep Closer to Trump in New Poll

Cruz has benefited from Rubio's exit. (Rob Kunzig/Morning Consult)

Donald Trump strengthened his grip on the GOP nomination for president this week, but a new Morning Consult poll shows Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Ohio Gov. John Kasich closing the gap with the real estate mogul.

Twenty-seven percent of GOP voters said they’d vote for Ted Cruz and 14 percent went with Kasich, an increase of four and five percentage points, respectively. Trump was the first choice for 43 percent of respondents, up one point from our previous poll.

Much of their increased support is likely owed to Florida Sen. Marco Rubio dropping out of the race after losing his home state to Trump.

 March 16-18, 2016March 11-13, 2016March 4-6, 2016
Donald Trump43%42%40%
Ted Cruz27%23%23%
John Kasich14%9%10%
Marco Rubion/a12%14%
Someone Else7%5%5%
Don't Know/No Opinion10%8%8%

Support for the candidates on the Democratic side of the race showed less movement after Hillary Clinton’s successful Tuesday at the ballots.

The former first lady and secretary of State was the first choice for 49 percent of Democratic voters, an increase of one point from the previous poll; the support for Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) remained at 40 percent.

 March 16-18, 2016March 11-13, 2016March 4-6, 2016
Hillary Clinton49%48%52%
Bernie Sanders40%40%36%
Someone Else4%5%5%
Don't Know/No Opinion7%7%7%

The Morning Consult survey polled 2,011 registered voters from March 16-18 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points. See the toplines and crosstabs.