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Ted Cruz, Rand Paul lead Tea Party presidential poll

(AP Photo/The Dallas Morning News, Michael Ainsworth)

(AP Photo/The Dallas Morning News, Michael Ainsworth)

Sens. Ted Cruz (Texas) and Rand Paul (Ky.) have solidified their places as stalwarts of the conservative movement. And according to a new Tea Party poll gauging support for Republican presidential hopefuls, they’re the top picks to take back the White House in 2016.

The online poll, conducted by TheTeaParty.net and Contract from America, found that the tenacious defenders of liberty are the movement’s most popular presidential hopefuls.

According to The Washington Examiner, which received the poll’s findings, 84 percent of those surveyed said they would support Cruz in 2016. Paul followed closely behind the Texas conservative, with 80 percent saying they would support the Kentucky senator.

“There’s a resounding message in these poll results for the Washington establishment. This is not a survey of casual Republicans or sometimes voters. These are activists who pound the pavement, make the phone calls, and cast their votes in every election every year,”  Todd Cefaratti, founder of TheTeaParty.net, told The Washington Examiner.

But the 62,000 surveyed didn’t respond too kindly to the Republican establishment vying for the Tea Party’s support. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush were the least popular among conservatives, with only 15 percent and 29 percent, respectively, hoping to see them in the White House. Also among those polling lowest were former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman and Sen. Kelly Ayotte (N.H.).

Those surveyed by the Tea Party groups also reaffirmed their support for conservative heroes Ben Carson, 2008 Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.

According to Cefaratti, the poll proves the discontent the conservative grassroots feel toward the establishment.

“They have a message for the candidates of status quo Washington: We are coming for you. We will beat you. And we will send you packing from the halls of power,” he said.


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