According to the latest NBC News/SurveyMonkey tracking poll, neither Ted Cruz nor Donald Trump could beat Hillary Clinton in a general election.
Now, that’s assuming Hillary wins the Democratic nomination. Hillary still holds a lead over Bernie Sanders, but not by much. According to the poll, Bernie is trailing by only 6% among the Democratic electorate.
When given the choice between Clinton, Cruz, a third party candidate, or not voting, registered voters are fairly split between Clinton and Cruz: Thirty-seven percent would vote for Clinton and 32 percent would vote for Cruz. Another 19 percent would vote for an unnamed third party candidate and 10 percent would not vote at all.
When asked about Trump as the GOP nominee in November instead of Cruz, registered voters are split between Clinton and Trump, though the race is tighter: Thirty-eight percent would vote for Clinton and 36 percent would vote for Trump. Another 16 percent would vote for a third party candidate and 8 percent would abstain from voting.
When looking at this question by candidate support, only about half of Cruz supporters and half of Trump supporters said they would vote for the other GOP candidate in a general election should the Democratic candidate be Hillary Clinton.
While the GOP nomination still hangs in the balance, these poll numbers prove one reality- the only way to defeat Hillary Clinton in the general election is unity in the Republican Party.