Donald Trump's poll dominance in 2 key states is mind-blowing

Brett LoGiurato 5h

Real-estate mogul Donald Trump has opened up large leads in the key early states of South Carolina and Nevada, according to new CNN/ORC polls.

But more impressive, amid an overall narrative that the front-runner's poll numbers have plateaued over the past month, is his continued dominance of the issues.

In Nevada and South Carolina, at least, Trump is crushing his Republican counterparts on some of the issues most important to GOP voters.

When voters in Nevada were asked who could best handle ...

The economy, 67% of Republicans in Nevada said Trump, 60 points ahead of his next-closest challenger, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina.

Foreign policy, 34% said Trump, about 20 points ahead of Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Florida).

Illegal immigration, a whopping 55% said Trump.

ISIS, the militant group, 46% said Trump, 33 points above Rubio.

Moreover, 34% of Republican voters in Nevada said Trump "best represents" views of Republicans like themselves. And, significantly, 47% thought Trump would have the best chance of winning the general election next November. Nationally, that number has been much lower, with only 25% of Republican voters in a July poll saying they could see him winning the nomination.

And when GOP voters in South Carolina were asked who could best handle ...

The economy, 59% said Trump, which put him more than 50 points ahead of former Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson.

Foreign policy, 27% said Trump.

Illegal immigration, 51% said Trump.

ISIS, 37% said Trump.

Additionally, 25% said Trump best represented the values of Republican voters like themselves. Another 58% said he was most likely to "change the way things work in Washington." And 44% thought he had the best chance of winning the general election next November.

Of all the numbers, Trump's biggest perceived strength — the economy — might be the most important. Overall, 39% of GOP voters in Nevada and 41% in South Carolina said the economy would be the most important issue for them when they go to the polls.