Texas Sen. Ted Cruz has surged to the top tier of Republicans running for president following his official entrance into the race last week, according to a new national poll conducted by Public Policy Polling.
The poll, which surveyed 443 Republican primary voters across the country from March 26-31, still shows Cruz trailing Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush among Republicans across the country.
Cruz’s 16 percent in the poll is up from 5 percent since last month, the pollsters noted.
“This contest is starting to bear some resemblance to the 2012 Republican nomination fight,” said Dean Debnam, the president of Public Policy Polling.
“It’s very reminiscent of the boom and bust we saw with various candidates four years ago,” Debnam added. “And Jeb Bush remaining steady as others rise and fall is also similar to how things went for Mitt Romney went that cycle.”
The poll has Walker at 20 percent, Bush at 17 percent, Cruz at 16 percent, Ben Carson at 10 percent, Rand Paul at 10 percent, Marco Rubio at 6 percent, Mike Huckabee at 6 percent, Chris Christie at 4 percent and Rick Perry at 3 percent.
The poll indicates that Cruz leads the field among those who consider themselves “very conservative,” getting 33 percent of that vote.
It also shows former neurosurgeon Ben Carson losing ground to Cruz, dropping from 18 percent to 10 percent in the poll.
“A couple of months ago Ben Carson was the hot thing in the field, now Ted Cruz is and Carson’s support is drying up,” Debnam said.