Donald Trump maintained his large lead over the rest of the Republican presidential candidates in the first national poll released in 2016. The billionaire businessman had 35 percent support in the NBC News/Survey Monkey poll, which was released Tuesday. His nearest competitor, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, was 17 points behind with 18 percent support, followed by Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida (13 percent), retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson (9 percent), former Florida governor Jeb Bush (6 percent), and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (4 percent).
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