Ted Cruz remains the first choice of Hot Air readers, followed by Scott Walker and Donald Trump. Most candidates have stayed steady over the last month, but as Trump rose, June’s third place winner Rick Perry fell. Whether Perry supporters have migrated or simply didn’t come out to vote this time, I don’t know, but Perry’s loss was basically Trump’s gain. That’s the first takeaway.

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The second takeaway is this: that regardless of who you support, a Republican primary debate without Bobby Jindal and Carly Fiorina would be woefully incomplete. Not only did both make the top 5 in the consensus vote, but Fiorina is now actually in the top 3 among second choices and the top 5 among first choices.

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The idea that Obamacaid-supporting John Kasich — who does no better than tenth in any of these lists — would get a seat at the debate but Fiorina or Jindal could be left off the stage is, simply put, ridiculous. And Perry, who’s fallen, still has a strong argument as a top 10 candidate that’s at least as good as Kasich’s. It will be interesting to see what the final lineup looks like.

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