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Poll: Trump is Tennessee’s favorite presidential candidate, even if convicted

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(The Center Square) – Tennessee voters prefer Donald Trump in a presidential vote ahead of any candidate, even if he were to be convicted of a felony, according to a new Vanderbilt Poll of statewide issues.

The poll included interviews with 1,005 registered voters between Nov. 14 and Dec. 2.

A felony conviction by a jury would cost Trump about 8 percentage points in November’s election but he would still be the favorite in Tennessee.

That potential decrease would include a 16-point change from voters who call themselves Independent, a 9-point drop (93% to 84%) among voters who self-identify as MAGA Republicans and a 16-point drop (66% to 50%) in the support of non-MAGA Republicans.

“When we consider the narrow margins of victory in some of the battleground states we saw in 2020, the changes we find in the enthusiasm of support among independents and non-MAGA Republicans suggest that a conviction could have a decisive effect in closely contested states,” said Josh Clinton, co-director of the Vanderbilt Poll. “These results are perhaps particularly compelling because they come from Tennessee – a reliably red state where you think voters may be least likely to change their opinion of Trump, given how much support he has in the state.”

The poll found Trump is the overwhelming Republican primary favorite in Tennessee with 56% of all Republican voters selected Trump, far ahead of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (20%) and former governor of South Carolina Nikki Haley (12%).

Trump is a 46-percentage point leader in a two-way race with Haley among Republican and Republican-leaning voters.

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