Thirty-five percent of Republican primary voters support Trump, up 13 points since October, and his highest level of support in CBS News polling. Ted Cruz (16 percent) has moved into second place, while Ben Carson, who led the October poll, has dropped to third.
Marco Rubio is in fourth place with 9 percent. Jeb Bush is getting the backing of just 3 percent of Republican primary voters nationwide, his lowest percentage to date in CBS News polling. Carly Fiorina's support has also dropped; she is at just 1 percent now.
Trump voters continue to be more firm in their support. Fifty-one percent of his backers say their minds are made up about him, compared to just a quarter of voters who support a candidate other than Trump. Trump leads among both men and women. He has more than a 20-point lead among non-college graduates (and a smaller lead among those with a college degree).
Malala Yousafzai, the youngest-ever Nobel Peace laureate, slammed Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump in an interview Wednesday. “The more you speak about Islam and against all Muslims, the more terrorists we create,” she said, dismissing Trump’s recent string of remarks about Muslims, including his proposal to ban all Muslims from entering the United States. Yousafzai has spent her young life promoting education opportunities for women after she was shot in the head in Pakistan for attending school in 2012.
Putin on Trump: He is a very flamboyant man, very talented, no doubt about that. But it's not our business to judge his merits, it's up to the voters of the United States."
Trump - who holds the lead in opinion polls in his bid for the Republican nomination and was dubbed the "absolute leader" in the race by Putin - said that by working together, the United States and Russia could work toward defeating terrorism and "restoring world peace." The billionaire businessman's remarks were in stark contrast to his Republican rivals' rhetoric. Republicans have frequently taken to bashing Putin and have used his rocky relationship with Democratic President Barack Obama as evidence that the administration lacks strength in international affairs.
Trump, who called Putin "highly respected," has frequently argued that his business background and ability to negotiate deals would allow him to improve relations with Russia, as well as other nations. Putin, speaking on Thursday at his year-end news conference, told reporters he welcomed Trump's desire for better relations with Russia.
"He is a very flamboyant man, very talented, no doubt about that. But it's not our business to judge his merits, it's up to the voters of the United States," Putin told reporters. "He is an absolute leader of the presidential race, as we see it today. He says that he wants to move to another level relations, a deeper level of relations with Russia," Putin said. "How can we not welcome that? Of course, we welcome it."
Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump took to Facebook on Thursday morning to thank a right-wing conspiracy website for the “amazing honor” of naming him its Man of the Year. Trump told the publication, WorldNetDaily, that he “very much” appreciates its “informative polls and coverage.”
WorldNetDaily’s founder and editor Joseph Farah is one of the nation’s leading purveyors of “birther” conspiracy theories — the repeatedly debunked notion that President Barack Obama was born in Kenya — publishing more than 600 posts on the topic. Even after Obama released his long-form birth certificate indicating his birth in Hawaii, Farah claimed that this proved nothing. Trump has frequently repeated these claims and Politico reported in 2011 that Farah frequently advised the billionaire investor and former reality show host.
An al Qaeda affiliate has apparently released a new recruitment video, telling Muslims in America that the country has a long history of racism and discrimination and will turn on its Muslim community.
The video purportedly by Somali terrorist group al-Shabaab uses historic civil rights era footage of firebrand Malcolm X and audio of 2016 presidential candidate Donald Trump to label the United States a racist society.
In the wake of the San Bernardino, California, shootings last month, Trump said he wanted "a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country's representatives can figure out what the hell is going on." The video runs this line, bleeping out the word "hell."