According to a recent CBS News/YouGov poll conducted from January 10 to 12, three top Republican presidential candidates, including former President Trump, former United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley, and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, are leading President Joe Biden in a hypothetical general election matchup. The poll found that Haley would have the biggest lead over Biden with 53% to Biden's 45%. DeSantis follows closely with 51% to Biden's 48%, while Trump hypothetically beats Biden by two percentage points, 50% to Biden's 48%.
It is worth noting that Trump currently holds a significant lead over both Haley and DeSantis in the Iowa caucuses and is expected to secure the party's presidential nomination, barring any significant changes. Interestingly, the poll found that Trump's legal battles have actually boosted support for him, with more supporters stating that they are voting to support him because of his legal battles, rather than in spite of them.
On the other hand, Biden's popularity has been impacted by concerns over the economy. Only 21% of voters believe they would be better off financially with Biden in office, and more than a third of Democrats prioritize having a strong economy over a functioning democracy.
These poll results are consistent with previous polls conducted during this election cycle. An Issues & Insights/TIPP poll from earlier this month showed Trump with a slightly bigger lead of 37% to Biden's 34% when third-party candidates are included. Haley has consistently performed better against Biden than her GOP competitors in recent polls, including a Wall Street Journal poll that showed her beating Biden by 17 points, 51% to 34%.
It is important to note that while Haley has a significant lead over Biden in most polls, there are exceptions. A Rasmussen Reports poll from earlier this month showed both Trump and DeSantis beating Biden, while Haley trailed behind Biden.
Overall, these poll results indicate that the top Republican candidates have the potential to defeat President Biden in a hypothetical general election matchup. However, it is important to consider that polls are not always indicative of actual election outcomes, and much can change between now and the actual election.