BOSTON -- Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Texas Gov. Rick Perry were the leading potential Republican presidential candidates while Hillary Clinton had an overwhelming lead over Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren in a Suffolk University poll of self-described 2016 Minnesota GOP caucus voters.

Fifteen percent of self-described Minnesota Republican caucus-goers named Bush and Perry as their first choice for their

party's nomination for president, while Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie were tied at 9 percent; Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Florida) had 8 percent; and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) was the first choice of 6 percent.

On the Democratic side, former Secretary of State Clinton led Massachusetts first-term Sen. Warren by 63 percent to 15 percent, with five other Democrats receiving less than 5 percent, including Vice President Joe Biden. In early April, Clinton led Warren 63

percent to 12 percent in a Suffolk University poll of Democratic Iowa caucus-goers, with Biden getting 10 percent.

"Although these are small subsets of voters, an interesting pattern is emerging," said David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center in Boston. "Jeb Bush has quietly scored in the top three among combined first and second choices in Minnesota, Iowa and New Hampshire - states far away from Florida or Texas. No other Republican has been that consistent.


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And as other first-choice candidates drop out, a great number of their supporters will rotate to Bush, because he is the second choice of many in these states."

Bush has indicated he will not make a decision on a 2016 run until the end of this year.

"Democrats are making polling history with two women leading for their party's nomination in back-to-back public polls, even though there is a long way to go and neither has declared a candidacy," said Paleologos.