An October 2 Pew Research Center survey showed Republicans are more satisfied with their field than they were in 2007 and 2011. Fifty-nine percent of Republicans have an excellent or good impression of the candidates, compared to 49% at this point in 2011 and 50% at this point in 2007.
The same Pew study highlighted how likely primary and caucus goers are affected by a candidate's position on particular issues. Among Republicans and Republican leaners, 69% are more likely to support a candidate who wants to end the nuclear agreement with Iran. A majority of Republicans/Republican leaners are more likely to support a candidate who seeks to end Planned Parenthood funding (56%) and send ground troops to fight ISIS (53%). Forty-three percent said they are more likely to vote for a candidate who wants to deport illegal immigrants, whereas 29% said they are less likely to support a candidate with this position. Thirty-one percent are more likely to support a candidate who wants to raise taxes on the wealthy, whereas 34% said they are less likely to back someone with this mindset or that it would not be a factor (also 34%).
It is good news that Republicans like the current field but the data on attitudes on issues should be taken with more than a few grains of salt. It is comparatively early in the process and candidates and their campaigns do and will affect voter attitudes. But the Pew study provides insights on GOP voter attitudes. It will be interesting to see if the campaign changes these views over time.