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The Lid: Ben Carson’s 2016 Climb Continues

Welcome to The Lid, your afternoon dose of the 2016 ethos…In a sentence that we would not have anticipated writing for a serious news website 48 hours ago, Bernie Sanders assured supporters in Iowa on Sunday that he does, in fact, own more than one pair of underwear.

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’16 AT 30 THOUSAND

Hold on to your pumpkin spice lattes, folks, because we have a ton of pipin’ hot new poll data coming at you today and tomorrow from the NBC News Political Unit brain trust. And it starts with a fresh look at the GOP presidential field. Donald Trump remains in the top spot, garnering 25 percent support, while Ben Carson is close behind at 22 percent. Marco Rubio has third place, clocking in at 13 percent support, while Ted Cruz (nine percent) and Jeb Bush (eight percent) are fourth and fifth.

Here’s a number that stuck out to us, too: When asked which candidates they can imagine themselves supporting, GOP primary voters give big marks to Ben Carson. He’s always had a significant upside - but now, fully three-quarters of Republican voters say they could back him - and that’s after the latest round of Carson’s controversial comments. The next highest is Marco Rubio - another candidate who’s consistently been able to boast of broad potential support. Sixty-five percent of Republican voters say they can imagine backing him. Fifty-nine percent say they could support Trump, up from 47 percent just last month.

POPPING ON NBC POLITICS

CAMPAIGN QUICK READS

CLINTON: Per the New York Times: The ‘super PAC’ supporting Hillary Clinton will advertise on television for the first time in the 2016 presidential campaign, running an ad ahead of her Benghazi testimony on Thursday.

BIDEN: A Democratic lawmaker tweeted that an unidentified source told him Joe Biden is running.

BUSH: The former Florida governor is building a data operation aimed at bringing out voters in the general election, the AP reports.

TRUMP: And the Washington Post took him to task for tweeting that he could “use a big fat dose of global warming.”

FOR THE RECORD…

“I have an ample supply of underwear.”

  • Bernie Sanders on Sunday after Larry David impersonated him on “Saturday Night Live,” saying he owns just one pair of undies.

TOMORROW SKED

Vice President Joe Biden attends a policy summit at George Washington University in D.C.

Ben Carson continues his book signing tour in Texas.

The House GOP conference holds a closed-door meeting at 7 p.m.