PPP's newest Iowa poll finds Scott Walker well ahead of the rest of the Republican field in Iowa, getting 23% to 13% for Marco Rubio, 12% for Jeb Bush, 10% each for Mike Huckabee and Rand Paul, 8% for Ted Cruz, 7% for Ben Carson, 5% for Chris Christie, and 4% for Rick Perry.
Walker has the highest favorability out of anyone in the field, with 59% of voters viewing him favorably to 13% who have an unfavorable view. The key to Walker's success is that he's winning both among voters who are most concerned about electability in the general election and among voters who are most concerned with having the most conservative candidate. Among voters who say being able to win in the general is their top priority, Walker gets 21% to edge out Marco Rubio (20%) and Jeb Bush (17%). His lead is much more emphatic among voters saying conservatism is their top priority- with them he gets 29% to 14% for Cruz, 12% for Paul, and 10% for Huckabee.
Rubio's second place standing reflects his recent rise nationally. Boding well for him is that beyond being in second place overall, he is also tied with Walker for being the most frequent second choice of voters at 13%. That gives him a lot of room to grow if other candidates falter along the way.
Bush's third place finish is because he really continues to struggle with conservative voters in the key early states. Overall he only has a 38/37 favorability rating, and that's because with those identifying themselves as 'very conservative' he comes in at 30/45. He only polls at 2% as the first choice for the nomination with that group, putting him in last place. He still finishes third overall due to solid performances with moderates and voters identifying as just 'somewhat conservative.' Bush's 12% standing is steady though- it's where we found him when we last polled the state a year ago as well- Iowa so far just doesn't seem to be a very strong place for him.
Other notes on the Iowa Republican field: