Donald Trump remains the clear Republican front-runner across the nation, and is defying the predictions of pundits again by gaining steam less than two months before the Iowa caucuses, according to a new poll.

Quinnipiac University's latest survey of Republican voters finds the billionaire businessman has risen 3 percentage points since early November and now stands at 27 percent.

Trump's bump comes after GOP strategists and members of the media speculated that his widely-disputed claim that "thousands" of Muslim-Americans celebrated the Sept. 11 attacks could create trouble for him in the polls, particularly with fellow Republican contenders Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio on rising swiftly.

"It doesn't seem to matter what he says or who he offends, whether the facts are contested or the 'political correctness' is challenged, Donald Trump seems to be wearing Kevlar," Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, said in a statement Wednesday.

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