Are you scared yet? Donald Trump opens up his widest national lead of the campaign

The Teflon Don proves he is exactly what the GOP wants. Sorry Jeb!

By Sophia Tesfaye

Senior Politics Editor

Published December 4, 2015 4:29PM (EST)

  (Reuters/Nancy Wiechec)
(Reuters/Nancy Wiechec)

Donald Trump's polling dominance reached new heights Friday, a week after battling accusations that he mocked a New York Times reporter's physical disability and repeatedly arguing that he saw "thousands and thousands" of Muslim Americans in Norther New Jersey celebrating on 9/11.

Although Trump appeared to have reached his ceiling of support, plateauing in a series of polls back in the fall, a new CNN poll out Friday moved Trump into his highest standing ever in the Real Clear Politics average. Trump now bests his Republican presidential rivals by a stunning 20 points to capture the support of 36 percent of Republican primary voters, an all-time high. Looks like his most distasteful, bloodthirsty boast this week that "whenever there’s a tragedy, everything goes up, my numbers go way up," is an astute observation of his craven base. Trump jumped nine points since the last poll.

As for the competition, Ben Carson dropped eight points since the last CNN poll conducted in October to come in third to new runner-up, Ted Cruz. The Texas senator grabbed 16 percent support while Carson received 14 percent, followed by Marco Rubio at 12 percent. The rest of the field doesn't crack 5 percent with poor Jeb! at 3 percent and Rand Paul dropping 4 points to a paltry 1 percent.

Trump is the GOP primary voter's man. The former reality tv star holds massive leads over his Republicans rivals as the candidate most trusted to handle the economy (46 point lead), the federal budget (41 point lead), illegal immigration (34 point lead) and ISIS (31 point lead). And a majority of GOP primary voters are confident Trump is the man most likely to win the general election.

Trump's supporters are not college educated and support mass deportation of undocumented immigrants by large margins. 46 percent of those polled without a college degree support Trump, compared to 12 percent for Cruz, 11 percent for Carson and 8 percent for Rubio. 67 percent of Trump supporters say the government should attempt to deport all undocumented immigrants, while just 39 percent of Republican voters backing other candidates agree.

Trump now nearly doubles the support of his closest competitor, Ben Carson, in the Real Clear Politics average.

By Sophia Tesfaye

Sophia Tesfaye is Salon's senior editor for news and politics, and resides in Washington, D.C. You can find her on Twitter at @SophiaTesfaye.

MORE FROM Sophia Tesfaye

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

2016 Republican Primary Cnn Poll Donald Trump