Billionaire real estate mogul Donald Trump continues to lead the crowded field of U.S. Republican presidential candidates, according to a new CBS News survey, while former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has a substantial lead in the race for the Democratic nomination.
CBS said Sunday that its survey of more than 1,200 voters in recent days showed Trump with the support of 27 percent of Republicans, followed by another political novice, former neurosurgeon Ben Carson, with 21 percent. None of the other 13 Republican candidates, including numerous current and former senators and governors, recorded double-digit support, with Texas Senator Ted Cruz next at 9 percent and Florida Senator Marco Rubio at 8 percent.
The flamboyant Trump has attracted support from Republican voters angered at Washington by taunting his opponents as losers and as weak, while calling for the deportation of 11 million immigrants living illegally in the United States.
On Sunday, he talked about gun control in the wake of another mass shooting, in which a gunman killed nine people at a community college in Oregon more than a week ago.
He told CBS's "Face the Nation" that had someone been carrying a gun at the school, "the result would have been better. Assuming they knew how to use the weapon, which hopefully they would, you would've been a lot better when this maniac walked into class, starting to shoot people."
He said that he has a concealed weapons permit, like 12 million other Americans, and that he "sometimes" carries a gun.
"I feel much better being armed," Trump said, "I like to have myself protected."
The television network's political survey showed Clinton with 46 percent support among Democratic voters, followed by an independent Democratic socialist, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders with 27 percent and Vice President Joe Biden, who is considering a late entry into the presidential contest, with 16 percent.
Clinton, Sanders and three other Democrats, but not Biden, are set to hold their first debate on Tuesday. The Republican candidates have already had two debates. The first Republican and Democratic contests in the lengthy path toward picking party nominees for the 2016 election are set for February.