Donald Trump leads the Republican presidential field in the March 15 primary states of Florida and Illinois, while John Kasich holds the edge in his home state of Ohio, according to three new NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist polls.
On the Democratic side, meanwhile, Hillary Clinton leads Bernie Sanders in all three states, although she’s just narrowly ahead in Illinois.
In Florida, Trump holds a 2-to-1 advantage among likely GOP voters over Marco Rubio, the state’s U.S. senator, 43 percent to 22 percent. They’re followed by Ted Cruz at 21 percent and John Kasich at 9 percent.
In Illinois, Trump gets the support of 34 percent of likely GOP primary voters, Cruz gets 25 percent, Kasich gets 21 percent and Rubio gets 16 percent.
But in Ohio, Kasich, the state’s incumbent governor, holds a six-point lead over Trump, 39 percent to 33 percent – followed by Cruz at 19 percent and Rubio at 6 percent.
In the Democratic race, Clinton is ahead of Sanders among likely primary voters by 27 points in Florida, 61 percent to 34 percent; by 20 points in Ohio, 58 percent to 38 percent; but by just six points in Illinois, 51 percent to 45 percent.
The size of Clinton’s lead in all three states directly correlates to her advantage with African-American Democratic voters – 57 points in Florida (77 percent to 20 percent), 48 points in Ohio (72 percent to 24 percent) and 39 points in Illinois (67 percent to 28 percent).
Among Latinos, Clinton holds just a five-point edge over Sanders in Florida, 51 percent to 46 percent, while Sanders leads Clinton among Latinos in Illinois, 64 percent to 30 percent.
Clinton, Sanders lead Trump in Florida and Ohio
In hypothetical general-election matchups in Florida, Clinton bests Trump by eight points among all registered voters, 49 percent to 41 percent, Cruz by five, 48 percent to 43 percent, and Rubio by one, 47 percent to 46 percent.
Sanders, meanwhile, is up by eight points against Trump, 50 percent to 42 percent, and seven points versus Cruz, 48 percent to 41 percent.
In Ohio, Clinton is ahead of Trump by six points, 48 percent to 42 percent. But she trails Cruz by two, 47 percent to 45 percent, and Kasich by 21, 57 percent to 36 percent.
Sanders tops Trump in the state by nine points, 50 percent to 41 percent, and Cruz by one, 45 percent to 44 percent.
The NBC/WSJ/Marist polls in Florida, Illinois and Ohio were conducted March 4-10. In Florida, the poll surveyed 2,422 total registered voters (which has a margin of error of plus-minus 2.0 percentage points), 511 likely GOP primary voters (plus-minus 4.3 percentage points) and 500 likely Democratic primary voters (plus-minus 4.4 percentage points).
In Illinois, the poll surveyed 1,968 registered voters (plus-minus 2.2 percentage points), 529 likely Democratic primary voters (plus-minus 4.3 percentage points) and 421 likely GOP primary voters (plus-minus 4.8 percentage points).
And in Ohio, the poll surveyed 2,052 registered voters (plus-minus 2.2 percentage points), 564 likely GOP voters (plus-minus 4.1 percentage points) and 453 likely Democratic primary voters (plus-minus 4.6 percentage points).