Real- estate magnate Donald Trump moved to the top of the 2016 Republican presidential field in a CNN poll released on Sunday, edging rival Jeb Bush and gaining support from Republicans in the last month despite a series of controversial statements.
Trump was backed by 18 percent of Republicans in the CNN poll, which was conducted entirely after his July 18 criticism of Republican Senator John McCain’s war record. His lead over Bush, a former Florida governor who was at 15 percent, was within the poll’s margin of error.
“There is a movement going on. This is more than me,” Trump said on CNN, saying the poll results were not surprising. “People are tired of these incompetent politicians in Washington that can’t get anything done.”
Trump and Bush were joined near the top of the pack by Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, who had 10 percent support among the Republican and Republican-leaning independent registered voters who were surveyed.
None of the other Republican candidates gained double-digit support. Sixteen Republicans are running for the party’s presidential nomination in the November 2016 election.
Trump has been criticized by fellow Republican candidates and party leaders for making incendiary comments about Mexican immigrants, belittling McCain’s war record and for his personal attacks against rival Republican White House contenders.