A new survey of likely U.S. voters suggests a general election contest between Republican front-runner Donald Trump and presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton would be a close battle.
According to the right-leaning Rasmussen Reports, Clinton would beat Trump just barely, 37 to 36 percent, if voters were to cast their ballots for president today. The latest survey results mark a slight reversal from late October, when Trump edged Clinton 38 to 36 percent.
Trump has ratcheted up his attacks against Clinton in the recent weeks, claiming she doesn't have the "strength [or] stamina" to be president and accusing her husband, former President Bill Clinton, of having a "penchant for sexism." The latter insult came after Clinton said Trump displayed the same "sexist" behavior.
"It's not the first time he's demonstrated a penchant for sexism," she told the Des Moines Register last Tuesday.
According to the same survey, a significant percentage of Americans would be disappointed to see the billionaire businessman and former secretary of state go toe-to-toe in a general election — 22 percent of respondents said they would vote for a third candidate in a Clinton vs. Trump matchup and 5 percent remain undecided.
While 75 percent of self-identified Democratic voters indicated they would support Clinton as the nominee, fewer Republicans said they would back Trump.
The survey of 1,000 likely voters was conducted between Dec. 22-23. Results contain a margin of error plus or minus 3 percent.