By far, the most anticipated part of the three-day Conservative Political Action Conference this weekend in Texas was the straw poll results. Former President Donald Trump picked up the victory for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination by an overwhelming majority.
Trump, who has hinted at giving it another shot in 2024, won 70% of the ballots cast in the anonymous straw poll from conservative activists and leaders across the country.
That’s a boost from the 55% support he won in the hypothetical 2024 Republican primary matchup straw poll at CPAC Orlando in late February.
“I want to personally thank each and every one of you for your incredible support,” Trump said as he gave the Dallas event’s keynote address minutes later.
Trump’s strong performance comes as no surprise. CPAC, long the largest and most influential gathering of conservatives, has become a Trump-fest since his 2016 presidential election victory.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis came in a distant second, at 21%. No one else among the 19 potential 2024 Republican White House contenders topped 1%.
For his resistance to lockdowns and COVID restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic, DeSantis topped the question for the 2024 ballot.
DeSantis grabbed 68% support on that question, with former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo at 5%. Donald Trump Jr. and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas were both at 4%, with South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem at 3%. No one else topped 2%.
Overall, DeSantis finished in second place with 21% support and was the only other Republican who scored in the double digits. Of the 1,525 CPAC attendees who participated, 88% said they “strongly approved” of Trump’s job in the White House with another 10% “somewhat approving.”