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One-third of GOP debate watchers say DeSantis performed best: survey

One-third of the people who watched the second GOP presidential primary debate this week said in a new survey that they think Gov. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) performed the best.

According to the survey, conducted by The Washington Post and Ipsos, 33 percent of debate watchers questioned said DeSantis outperformed his competitors. Eighteen percent of respondents said former Gov. Nikki Haley (R-S.C.) performed best.

Fifteen percent pointed to Vivek Ramaswamy, while former Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) and Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) were each cited by 6 percent. Only 3 percent of watchers said former Vice President Mike Pence performed best and 2 percent picked Gov. Doug Burgum (R-N.D.).

More than half of those surveyed, 54 percent, said they thought DeSantis performed “excellent” or “very good.” Nearly half, 48 percent, said Pence performed “poor” or “terrible.”

Almost a quarter — 24 percent — of respondents who watched the second debate said that they thought Christie performed the worst. Only 3 percent of watchers said the same of Scott.

More than half, 55 percent, said they have an unfavorable view of Christie. Fifty-three percent said they have an unfavorable view of Pence.

And almost 40 percent said the GOP debate did a poor job covering former President Donald Trump’s indictments.

After watching Wednesday’s debate, 60 percent of respondents said they have a favorable view of Trump, who skipped both the first and second debates. Following closely behind, 58 percent of respondents have a favorable view of DeSantis.

Sixty-three percent of respondents said they would consider voting for Trump in the Republican primary, while 51 percent said they would consider voting for DeSantis.

The survey was conducted Sept. 27 to 28 and had 2,262 respondents that the organization deemed “likely to vote in the upcoming Republican primary or caucus.” Its results have a margin of error of 2.3 percentage points.

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