Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Romney leads in NH, Trump makes things interesting

Mitt Romney's still the clear early front runner to take the Republican primary in New Hampshire next year but for the first time in our polling of the race PPP finds someone within single digits of him...Donald Trump.

If Trump actually run 21% of New Hampshire GOP voters say they'd vote for him, compared to 27% for Romney. The key to Trump's relatively strong showing? He does well with birthers and Tea Partiers, two groups he has seemed to actively court with his public comments of late. 42% of primary voters firmly say they do not believe Barack Obama was born in the United States to 35% who believe that he was and 23% who aren't sure. Trump leads Romney 22-21 with the birther crowd, but Romney holds the overall lead because he's up by a much wider margin with the folks who dismiss the birther theory.

Trump also leads Romney 23-21 with the Republican primary voters who consider themselves to be Tea Party members but that's only 30% of the electorate and Romney's up by a good margin with the folks who don't identify with that movement.

If you take Trump out of the picture Romney maintains the customary wide lead he has shown in most polling of the state. On the standard Republican primary question we ask in every state Romney gets 31% to 15% for Mike Huckabee, 13% for Newt Gingrich, 10% for Sarah Palin and Ron Paul, 4% for Michele Bachmann and Tim Pawlenty, and 2% for Haley Barbour.

We also asked about three other permutations of the race in which 1) Palin didn't run, 2) Huckabee didn't run, and 3) neither Huckabee nor Palin ran to get some idea of whether their supporters would consolidate around a single candidate and make that person a threat to Romney. That did not prove to be the case though. With Huckabee out of the picture Romney's lead just widens with him at 37% to 14% for Gingrich and Palin and 13% for Paul. It's a similar story with Palin out of the mix- Romney's support climbs to 35% with Huckabee at 14% and Paul and Gingrich at 13%. And even with both Huckabee and Palin out Romney leads with 40% to 18% for Paul and 17% for Gingrich.

There is one huge warning sign for Romney in this poll despite the leads he posts in every permutation though: 61% of primary voters say they would not be willing to vote for someone who supported a bill at the state level mandating that people have health insurance. In 5 of the 6 horse race questions we asked Romney still leads with those voters, suggesting that most Republicans who follow politics and the 2012 race only casually are not really aware of 'Romneycare.' It's safe to say they'll be well aware of it 9 months from now, and it's going to be interesting to see if Romney can sustain his support once he's been endlessly bashed over the head with it.

Your winners in this poll:

1) Romney- signs of vulnerability down the road notwithstanding you can't argue with leading every possible match up and by double digits in most cases.

2) Trump- it has to drive the people who've been running or at least laying the groundwork for a run for months nuts that he can just spout off some birther rhetoric and earn the best New Hampshire poll support anyone other than Romney's shown to date.

3) Paul- his favorability numbers are better than Gingrich, Huckabee, and Palin's and he has a double digit level of support in almost every match up we looked at, including a second place finish over Gingrich when you take Huckabee and Palin out of the mix.

Your losers in this poll:

1) Huckabee- these numbers give little indication that he's been able to build much on his weak 11% showing in the state in 2008, or that he would be particularly competitive with Romney even if Palin sat it out. His favorability is under 50% and not even that far above water at 48/36.

2) Palin- the fact that the best she can muster is a tie with Paul doesn't bode well for her prospects in the state if she ends up making a bad. Even if you take Huckabee out of the mix she still runs 23 points behind Romney, and her favorability of 51% is nothing to write home about.

3) Gingrich- his only real shot would seem to be if Palin and Huckabee don't run and their supporters unify around him against Romney. That's not happening at this point though- he only gains 4 points from 13% to 17% with them out of the mix while Romney actually sees a 9 point bump from 31% to 40%. And his favorability is weak as well at 45/36.

Bottom line in New Hampshire- Romney remains your favorite but there are some cracks there and the Donald could make things very, very interesting.

Full results here


John LaRosa said...

Recommend that you include Herman Cain in future polling. He's gaining momentum in Iowa and across the country. Thanks.

CraigS said...

I am confused . In Favorability ratings among TEA PARTY voters, Romney is + 64 % and Trump is + 17 %. Among all GOP voters, Romney 's favorables are + 49 % and Trump is MINUS 2
So exactly how does this translate to a Trump lead among Tea party voters , 23 to 21 and a Romney lead of 26 to 20 among all respondees? Is there absolutely no connection between Favorables and Voting Choices ???

Anonymous said...

Herman Cain should be listed in the poll. He is winning straw polls all over the country. He is the leader we need. Thanks for your time!

Andrew Carden said...

No Giuliani?

Tom Jensen said...

Giuliani's in the poll, I just didn't blog about his numbers. Click the link to the full results.

Statistikhengst said...

Wow, I would love to spot the element in all of this, the part of the electorate that is stark raving mad and batsh** crazy, but it appears that practically all but 12% of the republican electorate in NH is so.

ODS has really made progress, eh?

ODS: "Obama derangement syndrome"

Anonymous said...

Shouldn't the Florida R primary #s have been out yesterday?

OSUPhantom said...

I think these numbers look good for Giuliani. It's within striking distance of Romeny and hasn't been trying very hard until recently. Then again I'm biased...

Rasmus said...

Hi Tom,

I'm surprised about the relatively strong Santorum numbers. Not only does he have a pretty good Fav-Unfav- breakdown, but I'm surprised at 47% having an opinion on him.

Looking at his numbers, it seems like he would score in the 3-4% range had he been included in the matchups- his favs are better than Barbour's and just slightly weaker than Pawlenty's and Bachmann's.

Considering that Paw got lots of press and Bachmann is the Tea-Party darling it's odd that a relatively obscure former Senator five years out of office would do just as well.

Second, would you consider replacing Barbour with Trump in your primary polls after seeing these numbers?

Rasmus said...

Lastly, one thing that would be worth doing is a message-testing poll.

Test the primary in a state where Romney is strong, say, Nevada, or New Hampshire if you hadn't already done it, then ask 'Considering that Mitt Romney implemented an individual mandate during his tenure as Massachusetts Governor, would you vote for...'.

It seems biased, but it's really just testing what the effect of the primary campaign will be.

Anonymous said...

In future polling, start dumping Huckabee and Palin from your polling. Those two are running. Please include Trump, Bachmann, and Cain. Those people are running.

Granny T said...

You polled NH last weekend. Why haven't you posted the results of the polls you did 1-2 weeks ago? You said you'd post FL on Monday. Which Monday were you talking about? What about Mississippi and North Carolina? Was it that difficult to interpret the data? Or didn't you like the results?

Pit Crew said...

Please include Herman Cain in future polling! He's been winning straw poll after straw poll, and Gallup polling showed him 3rd our of 15 potential candidates. He clearly is showing that he deserves to be mentioned.

Bob Burns said...

I think Ron Paul has made it clear he is not running. Paul gets a big bounce in NH with not Huckabee i would like to see it the other way.

Dustin Ingalls said...

John LaRosa and Anon: We included Cain in Georgia, but won't likely elsewhere. Straw polls aren't good indicators of actual support, or Ron Paul would've overwhelmingly won the nomination in 2008.

"Is there absolutely no connection between Favorables and Voting Choices ???"

It's odd, but we've seen that quite often. If you've been reading the blog, you'll remember we've commented often on how well liked Palin is by Republicans, but how little that translates to votes in the primary. They like her, but they're not ready to vote for her for president. New Hampshire voters really like Romney and Paul, but obviously that doesn't mean Paul is getting huge support (though more than in most other states) or that Romney isn't vulnerable to a challenge from someone who galvanizes the right.

JDH8inNH said...

New Hampshire is home to the Nation's First in the Nation Primary and the resident of the state are well informed.

Anonymous said...

Trump is surging not just for his birther views but also for his staright talking about Iran, Red China and OPEC. He is the only one criticizing the on-going manufacturing sellout to a Communist nation by both parties. He has a Pro-American message that will resonate big time.

His message to also not let Iran takeover Iraq and get nukes is also a winner - a strong CIC.

My advice though is for him not to advocate psuedo-amnesty for illegals and to also come out against the H1-B visa sellout of American workers. He needs to push for making E-Verify mandatory for the globalist corporations thus again coming out for Main Street.

If he combines all these pro-American themes he wins the Republican primary in a cakewalk and also wins a Reagan-size victory over Obama.

American across the poliitical spectrum are longing for an American-First president that has strong leadership qualities.

Bob said...

"Recommend that you include Herman Cain in future polling. He's gaining momentum in Iowa and across the country. Thanks."

Such wishful thinking. If he doesn't lead the primary poll in his home state of Georgia then he's as good as toast.

Kevin said...

Looks like you're going to have to start putting Trump in all of your polls.

It's rather hilarious that he can come out there, spout a few conspiracies about Obama, and race ahead of nearly every established candidate.

Carney said...

No poll is a real poll unless it includes a proper, demographically weighted sample size of over 1,000 likely voters - not registered voters, not citizens, and certainly not just residents.

This poll MAY have gotten likely voters, since it surveyed "usual NH Republican primary voters", but "usual" isn't as good as likely.

But the fatal flaw is that it surveyed only 384 people - a far far cry short of a proper sample size.

So this is a junk poll, done on the cheap, with totally unreliable numbers. The media falls for these junk polls again and again and again.

But it fits the Silly Season to have a junk poll touting a joke candidate.

Meanwhile real candidates, most especially Romney, are actually laying the groundwork to run and win, rather than running around running their mouths.

I Am Iron Man said...

Here's hoping Trump actually runs and forces the other candidates to get even crazier in order to beat him.

What works for the Tea Party Birhers is actually what won't work for the general election.

I'm hoping that whoever the eventual GOP nominee is that they are completely unelectable... This is key to Obama winning by a wide margin so he has the coat tails to keep the Senate and win back the House.

This country is in dire need of more progress and we can't get it with the Republicans in control of anything.

Dustin Ingalls said...

"Was it that difficult to interpret the data? Or didn't you like the results?"

It's called having paying clients whose polls come before these pro-bono ones.

"No poll is a real poll unless it includes a proper, demographically weighted sample size of over 1,000 likely voters - not registered voters, not citizens, and certainly not just residents."

False. We're the pollsters here.

You can't do a LV screen almost a year before an election. That'd be incredible invalid. It'd also decrease the number of respondents.

Granny T said...

Thank you for answering my question. I'll try to be more patient.

Anonymous said...

Romney does NOT lead in NH. This was a poll skewed by his people for their agenda.

Ron Paul raised more money than Romney and even Bachmann who raised more money than Romney.

Romney is TOAST.

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