EXCLUSIVE WTHR/HPI Poll: Trump, Clinton have small leads in Indiana, overall tight race

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The results of the first statewide poll for Indiana’s upcoming primary show a small lead for party front runners Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, with a tight race on both sides of the aisle.

The WTHR/HPI Indiana Poll has Trump with a 6-point lead over his closest challenger Ted Cruz. The poll indicates a record turnout will favor Trump over the other candidates.

The results prove just how pivotal Indiana's primary race is going to be nationally. 

Republican Presidential Primary

  • Donald Trump 37%
  • Ted  Cruz 31%
  • John Kasich 22%

When you drill down into the numbers into core Republicans, it makes this race a virtual tie between Trump and Cruz.

The Democratic primary is even closer with Clinton holding a 3-point lead over Bernie Sanders (within the margin of error, making it a virtual tie). Hillary has a commanding lead with core Democrats but Sanders is leading with independents and first-time voters.

Democratic Presidential Primary

  • Hillary Clinton 48%
  • Bernie Sanders 45%

The WTHR/HPI Indiana Poll also took a detailed look at favorable and unfavorable ratings for each candidate.

With Republican voters, Trump has a favorability of 56% with an unfavorable rating of 40% for a net favorability score of 16%.

Cruz has the same net favorability score of 16% among Republican voters with a 54% favorable and a 38% unfavorable rating.

Kasich has the highest favorability score from Republican voters with a 25% net rating coming from a 52% favorable and 28% unfavorable score. Kasich also has the highest favorability scores in the counties surrounding Marion County and with women at least 55 years old. 

Cruz tops Kasich by 3% in Republican women 18 to 54 years old, far ahead of Trump with only 1% in that demographic. Cruz also leads the net favorability in Marion County with 27% over Trump’s 19% and Kasich’s 17% of Republican voters.

Sanders’ net favorability among Democrats is 56% and tops Clinton’s net rating of 41%. Sanders has a 73% favorability score to an 18% unfavorable score. Clinton’s favorability is at 68%, while her unfavorable score is 28%.

Clinton has a higher net favorability in the counties surrounding Marion County. She also out ranks Sanders with women at least 55 years old by a net score of 74% to 38%. Sanders beats Clinton in favorability with women 18 to 54 years old with a net score of 59% to 33%. He also has a higher favorability ranking inside Marion County.

WTHR commissioned the poll with Howey Politics Indiana. The poll surveyed 500 likely voters in the state from April 18-21. It has a four-point margin of error.