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GOP Base Lukewarm on Ryan Candidacy if Convention Contested

Republican primary voters are even more down on Romney

Speaker Paul D. Ryan is setting fundraising records. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Speaker Paul D. Ryan is setting fundraising records. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Nearly 60 percent of Republican primary voters would be comfortable with Donald Trump as their presidential nominee, according to a new poll that also found they were cool to the idea of either member of the 2012 ticket emerging as the standard-bearer from a contested convention.  

The Public Policy Polling survey released on Tuesday found that Trump easily outpolled his remaining rivals on the stump, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Ohio Gov. John Kasich.  

But concerns about his bilious persona and nationalistic message and whether he’s even electable in November, have prompted speculation of a contested convention yielding either Cruz, Kasich or someone else in July.  

PPP sought responses from 505 primary voters about Mitt Romney and House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, the losing presidential and vice presidential candidates four years ago.  

Ryan had a 50 percent approval rating as speaker from the base, according to the poll, but respondents were almost evenly split on whether they’d be comfortable with him as the nominee — 42 percent responded favorably while 45 percent did not. The numbers were even worse for Romney: 28 percent to 62 percent, respectively.  

PPP’s results are similar to those from an Economist/YouGov poll conducted at the start of March online among adults 18 years and over. And the numbers are similar to the base’s view of the GOP establishment.  

Ryan has condemned some of Trump’s more extreme remarks, about banning Muslims from entering the country, for example, but he has continued to say he would support him if he were the nominee.  

In a speech to congressional interns last week , Romney denounced political discourse that “did not used to be this bad,” but didn’t mention any of the presidential candidates by name.  

PPP, a Democratic polling firm, conducted its survey from March 24-26, and the results have a margin of error of plus or minus 4.8 percent.  

PPP’s polling is controversial , in part because of its partisan lean and in part because it uses automated telephone technology. Twenty percent of respondents in this poll did not have landlines and conducted the survey on the Internet.  

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