Monday, September 20, 2010

Another tie at the top

This month's look at the 2012 Republican Presidential field shows the same basic four way tie at the top that we see every month- but looking inside the numbers it also shows an unusual potential path to his party's nomination for Mitt Romney.

Romney's in first place with 22% followed by Mike Huckabee at 21%, Newt Gingrich at 18%, Sarah Palin at 17%, and Ron Paul at 6%.

What's fascinating about Romney's lead, as small as it is, is that it comes despite finishing fourth among conservatives. He gets 18% with them, lagging Gingrich at 22% and Huckabee and Palin at 21%. But he wins moderates by such a wide margin- getting 33% with Huckabee at 22% and the rest in single digits- that it propels him to the overall lead. If Romney can run even or just a little bit behind with conservatives but clean up in the middle that may just be enough to let him get the nomination.

As is the case every month Sarah Palin is the most personally popular of the Republicans, with 66% viewing her favorably. She is followed by Huckabee at 60% and Gingrich and Romney at 57%.

The problem for Palin is that a smaller percentage of the people who like her personally support her for President than any of the other Republicans. 37% of the voters who like Romney also say he's their choice for the 2012 nomination and the same is true for 32% who like Gingrich and Huckabee. But just 24% who see Palin positively on a personal level translate that to intent to vote for her.

One other interesting observation from the numbers:

-Romney's favorability with moderates is 5 point higher than with conservatives. That's quite a contrast to everyone else in the field, who have favorabilities at least 18 points higher with conservatives than moderates. For Palin the gap is 36 points, for Gingrich it's 24 points, and for Huckabee it's 18 points.

Full results here


NRH said...

So, basically, the way for Romney to win the nomination is to follow John McCain's trajectory. Run to the center, let two or three others split the hard right, win with 40% of the Republican vote. In a presidential year, primary participation is a lot higher, so the teabagger vote won't be nearly so influential (if teabaggers are even still in existence at that point) and the field will likely be split anyhow.

Jon said...

Why are including Ron Paul on your list, but not Thune or Pawlenty?

Anonymous said...

Considering how much money Mitt pours into the Values Conference, and the people of influence over the conference who are tied to him, it was a bad showing for Romney, and a probable end to Romney POTUS hopes, he will be chasing another candidates tail hoping to be chosen as V.P. again -

Anonymous said...

I am glad Romney is doing so well. I think he is the best hope for bringing our country out of the hole Obama and the Democrats have dragged us in. I personally like him. I don't care what anyone else thinks.

Anonymous said...

One thing I like about Romney is that President Obama's healthcare plan is modeled on his.

I think mandates, while politically incorrect, are the right way to go.

DRay1969 said...

Nominating Romney is a sure-fire way to destroy the grass roots enthusiasm that has built up over the past two years. All that excitement that is carrying the GOP to victory in 2010? Gone in a puff of flip-flops and wishy-washy Romney RINOism.

Given a choice between Romney and Obama, a lot of people will stay home or vote third party. I know I will.

Anonymous said...

If you like big government mandates, bailouts and flip flopping on issues, you'll love Romney.

Anonymous said...

I love Palin; and I love Dolly Pardon. But I don't want Dolly for President either.

I want the capable adult of this conservative group, Romney.

Joe said...

Mitt Romney is a by and far the most qualified, intelligent, and morally concerned individual in this list. He has proven himself as a businessman, a family man, a financial guru, and even as a politician.

Mitt has never stopped working hard and wise.

George Templeton said...

I hope the Tea Party can coalesce around one candidate before the primaries start.
How any Republican could pull a lever for a flip-flopping panderer like Mitt Romney. A Romney win will hand the White House back to Obama and cost the GOP winnable House and Senate seats in 2012. I'd vote Libertarian before I would vote for Romney.

Go Romney said...

This next Presidential election will be about the economy. Everything else is a distraction from the main problem in this country, which is the economy. Romney is a solid social conservative candidate and even if he is not #1 among social conservatives in one straw poll, that should not be the deciding issue when 20% of the country is out of work and mountains of debt are piling up.

Go Romney said...

Also, Romney never endorsed applying his Massachussetts health care plan at the national level. In fact, he specifically called for more of a federalist solution to national health care, in his 2008 campaign. Had Romney been elected President, he would never have implemented ObamaCare because he campaigned for a different kind of solution in 2008.

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