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Marquette Law poll: Top Democratic contenders lead Trump

As the presidential primary season gets into full swing, the latest Marquette Law School poll of registered Wisconsin voters finds former Vice President Joe Biden and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders — the two leading Democratic presidential contenders — slightly ahead of President Donald Trump in hypothetical match ups.

Meanwhile, most (61 percent) believe that Iran and the United States are likely to avoid a major military conflict following the U.S. drone attack that killed Iranian General Qassem Soleimani and a subsequent Iranian missile attack on bases in Iraq where U.S. troops are stationed.

The poll was conducted Jan. 8–12, 2020. The sample included 800 registered voters in Wisconsin interviewed by cellphone or landline, with a margin of error of +/- 4.1 percentage points.

In the hypothetical presidential matchups, Biden leads Trump in Wisconsin 49–45, while Sanders holds a slight 47–46 edge over the president. Former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg trails Trump by only 46–44, while Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren trails the president 48–45.

Among those who say they will vote in the Democratic presidential primary in April, Biden is the first choice of 23 percent, followed by Sanders at 19 percent, Buttigieg at 15 percent, and Warren at 14 percent. Michael Bloomberg and Andrew Yang are the first choice of 6 percent each.

Three-fifths of Democratic primary voters, 60 percent, say they might change their minds about their primary choice, while 38 percent say their minds are made up.

In the wake of the military exchange between the United States and Iran, 44 percent approve of President Trump’s handling of foreign policy and 53 percent disapprove, with 2 percent saying they don’t know. In December, 43 percent approved, and 54 percent disapproved.

Forty-three percent agree with the statement, “It’s about time that the U.S. struck back against Iran,” while 51 percent disagree, and 5 percent say they don’t know.

Overall, 48 percent of Wisconsinites approve of the job Trump is doing as president, while 49 percent disapprove. This is the first time Trump’s disapproval has fallen below 50 percent in the Marquette Law School Poll since March 2017, when 47 percent disapproved.

The Marquette survey also reported the following:

  • On impeachment, 40 percent say that Trump did something seriously wrong in his dealings with Ukraine, 14 percent say he did something wrong but not seriously so, and 37 percent say Trump did nothing wrong. Nine percent say they don’t know. Asked about the forthcoming Senate trial, 44 percent say the Senate should convict Trump and remove him from office, while 49 percent say the Senate should acquit him of the charges. Six percent say they don’t know.
  • In Wisconsin, Gov. Tony Evers’ job approval stands at 51 percent, with disapproval at 40 percent. Nine percent say they don’t have an opinion. In December, 50 percent approved, while 38 percent disapproved.

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