Early in the 2016 race, some data journalists suggested the GOP primary election could be a lot like 2012, in which a succession of fad candidates surged to first place, only to fall off after a few weeks. But Donald Trump’s support never really collapsed, and his closest competitor so far, Carson, seems to be losing ground. A new poll from WBUR finds Trump leading in New Hampshire with 22 percent, followed by Carson and Marco Rubio with 11 percent each. The margin of error is 5 percentage points. Though Carson never led polling averages in New Hampshire, a WBUR poll from late last month showed Trump ahead by just 3 percentage points.
Polls have gotten much more difficult to conduct, as a recent New Yorker article showed. So it’s possible we’ll have a huge surprise when people actually start voting. But looking at polling averages, like the chart above from the Huffington Post’s poll tracker, it seems like Carson is on the decline. Six national polls this month have put Trump ahead by 7 points or more. Most polls still put Carson ahead in Iowa, though he and Trump are close.