Raleigh, N.C. — In the run-up to this year's election, The Elon University Poll surveyed nearly 1,000 respondents about who they would like to see run for president in 2016.
Tops on the list are well-worn political names. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was named by 52.8 percent of Democrats surveyed and 21 percent of independents surveyed, while 2012 GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney garnered 18.6 percent among Republicans surveyed.
Of course, the news wasn't all good for Clinton. At least one or two Democrats said "Not Hillary Clinton" when asked the question.
Current President Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton show up on the lists, despite being constitutionally prohibited from holding office again.
After the top two or three names offered by voters of each party, the responses get down to less than 1 percent of those responding pretty quickly. However, each group of voters offered up some interesting options for those in the market for a different kind of candidate.
Democrats: In addition to Clinton, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, known for her criticism of banking institutions; a generic request for "a female candidate"; Republican and former Chairman of the Joints Chiefs of Staff Colin Powell; former Vice President Al Gore; and current Vice President Joe Biden. Comedians Adam Sandler and Stephen Colbert also made the list.
Independents: Behind Clinton were Republican Sen. Rand Paul, Romney, Warren and pediatric-surgeon-turned-conservative-pundit Ben Carson, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and Jesus Christ. Oprah, Microsoft founder Bill Gates, comedian Jon Stewart and "Not Hillary Clinton" also made the list.
Republicans: Romney, Carson and Paul place first, second and third among Republicans surveyed. Clinton and Christie place fourth and fifth. Former governors Jeb Bush and Mike Huckabee are also on the list, as are "Not Hillary Clinton," Powell and North Carolina Sen. Richard Burr. Jenna Bush – the daughter of the former president – former and deceased president Ronald Reagan, preacher Franklin Graham and country music singer Hank Williams Jr. also made the list.