Just over half of Americans agree with Mitt Romney that Trump is a 'fraud' and a 'phony', but Republicans disagree
As the Trump campaign maintained its strong momentum Republican heavyhitters Mitt Romney and John McCain blasted the frontrunner in unusually blunt language. Romney's intervention was particularly severe, calling Trump a 'phony' and a 'fraud', while John McCain said that Trump was 'dangerous'. Trump reacted in typical style, noting that Romney had 'begged' him to endorse his 2012 campaign.
A narrow majority of Americans (51%) agree with Mitt Romney's assessment that Donald Trump is a 'phony' and a 'fraud', though 31% do disagree. Unsurprisingly a large majority of Democrats (71%) agree that he is a fraud, along with many independents (45%). Half of Republicans, however, disagree with Romney that Trump is a fraud and a phony, though a third do agree.
The limited impact of Romney's intervention may, at least in part, be due to Romney's relative lack of popularity among Republicans compared to Trump. 57% of Republicans have a positive view of Trump, while 46% have a favorable view of Romney. The same percentage of Republicans, 46%, also have an unfavorable view of their 2012 candidate.
Republicans also narrowly tend to say that they would rather see Trump (44%) in the White House than Romney (39%). Overall, however, Americans would prefer a Romney presidency (43%) to a Trump presidency (31%) but this is largely due to most Democrats (53%) backing Romney over Trump. Among independents Romney only narrowly wins, 38% to 33%.