New Polling Numbers on Gingrich, Romney, and the rest

With four weeks to go before Iowa’s GOP caucuses, Newt Gingrich has taken a pretty strong lead among Republican voters in polls in Iowa, South Carolina and Florida. Romney leads by 9 in New Hampshire.

In CNN polls released Wednesday:

………………….IOWA…NH ……SC…. FLA

Gingrich………33……..26…….43……48
Romney……….20……..35…….20……23
Perry……………9……….2……..8………6
Paul……………17………17……..6………9
Bachmann…… 7……….3……..6………6
Huntsman…….1……….8………1………1
Santorum………5………2……..4………3

These results generally correspond with results released by other major polling firms. For example, Georgia-based polling company Insider Advantage has similar numbers in South Carolina: 38 for Gingrich and 15 Romney. Their poll was taken in November while Herman Cain was still in the race.

The Des Moines Register, considered the gold standard of polling in the state of Iowa, has Gingrich slightly lower than the CNN poll, yet still leading at 25% as of last week (prior to Herman Cain’s campaign collapse — Herman ended his campaign while at 8% in Iowa).

The interesting thing about Newt’s approach is that, politically, he’s not coasting now that he leads. Today he told the Republican Jewish Coalition that he’d appoint former UN Ambassador John Bolton. According to Real Clear Politics, the former Speaker said he would work to “overtly sabotage” Iran “every day,” and referred to Pakistan as a “pseudo-ally” which had clearly conspired to protect Osama bin Laden. He’s not pulling back or playing defense.

Republicans have been hungry for a red meat candidate. What makes his polling ascension different than Bachmann’s, Cains, and Perry’s temporary rise are two simple points:

#1 Gingrich is already a well-known national brand name.

#2. Republican voters already know he’s not perfect, has flaws, and have already taken these flaws into consideration.

He will out-debate any other Republican candidate on a stage. His biggest rival in debate is himself.

Most Americans would look forward to an Obama v Gingrich debate in the same way many people look forward to a national championship.  It would transcend “mere” politics and practically have a cultural entertainment value to it. But unlike a major sporting event, every American would have a personal stake in the outcome.

30 comments

  1. Calypso says:

    I liked the way Charlie put it in response to a question posted regarding recent revelations about Cain’s marital infidelity and why the public deemed them more damning than Gingrich’s. To paraphrase Charlie…Newt is flying with checked baggage, Herman has last-minute carry-on…

  2. So just a quick question here. How are the results above sorted? It’s not by first name or last name obviously. Paul is doing better than Perry in 3 of the 4 states. It almost looks like it’s sorted by percentage in SC, except for Santorum. How is it that Paul is listed 4th instead of 3rd? Is it just to make it appear that he’s not in the top 3?

  3. saltycracker says:

    Newt’s responses on Blitzer’s questions were clear that Israel would not allow Iran to have nuclear weapons and he would provide whatever assistance was needed. When asked if that would offend other Arab nations he said the Saudi’s were more afraid of Iran.

    The Blitzer CNN web site put up select cuts from Perry & Newt interviews but not the meaty policy ones from Newt. Newt handled all the questions very well including the clip posted, Perry, not so well.

      • saltycracker says:

        It is a not new, popular statement of support for Israel and what they want to hear as they consider it their real capital. With Obama demanding the Israeli’s back off land won from attacks and appeasing the terrorist Hamas, this is a strong position. Should draw money & typically Democrat voting Jews to Republican causes. Newt may be more serious than past promises.

        Who else in the middle east is going to keep nukes from terrorist hands ?

        According to:
        http://www.startribune.com/politics/135256483.html
        THE FACTS: A promise to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem has become a standard part of pro-Israel political rhetoric. Similar pledges were made during their campaigns by Bill Clinton and George W. Bush. But no administration has ever acted on such a promise once in office.

        President Barack Obama, as Clinton and Bush before him, maintains that Jerusalem’s status is a matter for negotiation between Israel and the Palestinians. Although candidate Obama never directly promised to move the embassy, it was a tricky subject: Obama drew criticism for saying that Jerusalem would remain the capital of Israel and would remain undivided.

        • Bridget says:

          Thanks for this link. If you make it to the next road show, I’d like to discuss further.

          I got back from Israel two days ago on a pleasure trip. In addition to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, I visited the West Bank and drove along the Lebanon, Syrian, and Jordanian borders. I also saw the wall (that I hear the US built/paid for) that splits Bethlehem. It’d be like splitting Marietta, and my mother being able to travel to me, but me not being able to travel to her without a big to-do.

          This topic is very much of interest to me, and I’m open to all sides of information to sort my personal view of the situation.

          • John Konop says:

            Bridget,

            You might find this interesting. It calls to question what is a pro Israel position?

            IN USA TODAY:

            Poll shows Israelis divided over attacking Iran

            …..Forty-one percent of those questioned by the Dialog polling institute said they would back an Israeli attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities, which many Israelis believe were built to produce bombs.

            A similar number — 39% — oppose such an attack, which would be fraught with logistical difficulties and risk a deadly Iranian counterstrike and regional mayhem. Twenty percent were undecided.

            The survey, published and commissioned by the Israeli Haaretz daily, surveyed 495 people on Wednesday and quoted a margin of error of 4.6 percentage points. The Dialog agency said its random sample represented Israeli adults……

            http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/story/2011-11-03/israel-iran-attack-poll/51063310/1

  4. John Konop says:

    What I find rather bizarre is how the TEA PARTY embraces Newt the 130mm dollar WASHINGTON insider over the other candidates. Romney made his money in the business world, while Newt made it selling off his Washington connections. As far as policy Newt was the father of Mandates for insurance companies and was making 30k a month off Fannie/Freddie while tax payers were left holding the bag. Can someone tell me why the TEA PARTY is behind NEWT now the poster boy for being a WASHINGTON insider? I will say Newt is a bright guy that adds a lot to the conversation on policy, but he and the TEA PARTY are like oil and water unless the TEA PARTY is now just another WASHINGTON insider group now.

    …….Abramoff replied, “This is exactly what I’m talking about. People who come to Washington who have public service and they cash in on it. And they use their public service and their access to make money, and unfortunatley Newt Gingrich is one of them who have done it. But far too many of them do it and one of the reforms I propose in my book is to close permanently the door, the revolving door, betweeen public service and cashing in as a lobbyist.”

    He added after another question, “I don’t know if he’ll survive this, to be honest with you, this is a very big thing.”

    “Why?” Gregory asked.

    “Because he is doing, and engaging in the exact kind of corruption that America disdains. The very things that anger the Tea Party movement and the Occupy Wall Street movement and everybody who is not in a movement and watches washington and says why are these guys getting all this money, why do they all become so rich, why do they have these advantages? Unfortunately Newt seems to play right into it.”…….

    Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1111/68547.html#ixzz1fxSpng4z

    • saltycracker says:

      Didn’t know the Tea Party embraces Newt. They freaked on his illegal immigrant program.

      Was Newt directing Fannie and supporting their lack of fiscal responsibility or were they paying for advice or trying to get Republican support ? Compare his actions with some of the actions we have seen in the most popular Republican politicians in Georgia around busted banks. Makes him look pretty clean.

      Newt is gaining traction as middle America wants a guy with a clear path most of them agree with which is what he exhibits, today.

      Newt’s Florida support was a surprise but a Romney/Rubio ticket would be great too.

      • John Konop says:

        …Newt is gaining traction as middle America wants a guy with a clear path most of them agree with which is what he exhibits, today…..

        In all due respect what is the NEWT plan?

        From the debates he sounds like he wants more bad trade deals not any attempt to fix the problem.

        Newt wants more military expansion which we cannot afford.

        Newt is all over the place on healthcare

        Newt was for No Child Left behind

        Newt is all over the place on the environment

        Newt was pro the homeownership society with tax payers on the hook

        I am not saying OBAM is any better, but please help me understand how the above helps the situation.

        • Engineer says:

          Nicely put, then there is this little gem of a commercial sponsored by Al Gore’s Alliance for Climate Protection, co-starring Newt Gingrich and Nancy Pelosi from a couple years ago.
          http://youtu.be/qi6n_-wB154

          Some more fun data regarding Newt:
          http://www.usatoday.com/news/politics/story/2011-12-05/fact-check-gingrich-climate-change/51661486/1

          So far, all Newt is giving are platitudes and talking points and the majority his plans have been turning out to be just slower moving, more incremental, versions of the plans that Democrats are talking about.

        • saltycracker says:

          Here is Newt’s current position on your concerns:
          http://www.newt.org/solutions

          Not saying I agree with all of them and wouldn’t like to see some done differently –
          It is up to either Newt or Romney to get Obama away from a destructive path.

          If Romney can take Newt apart on these issues and gain enthusiastic support – more power to him – whichever is the nominee, I’ll vote for him.

          We’ll probably not recognize either one once in office, but they can’t make it any worse, so there is hope.

          • Engineer says:

            I was aware of that link, and I stand by my statement that most of his plans look like “just slower moving, more incremental, versions of the plans that Democrats are talking about.”

  5. TPNoGa says:

    It breaks my heart that we might actually nominate Gingrich. I am not a fan. Then again, I am not a fan of any of them right now. I wish Pawlenty had stayed in the race, better yet, I wish Mitch Daniels got in the race.

  6. Gingrich (McCain 2.0) nomination = 4 more years of Obama, due to the only leg of the GOP stool he’ll get votes from is the big goverment hypocrit( combined with those willing to lie to themselves) leg…. but of course a third candidate will be blamed because he “stole” votes from their candidate. Here’s a novell idea… why not EARN the votes by nominating a real constitutional/fiscal conservative to begin with, instead of a pretty talking “has been” that has already shown he will NOT hold the line.

    -that is all.

  7. Harry says:

    Especially in this cycle the problem for the GOP is shaping up to be that, no matter who gets the nomination, there will be significant numbers of supporters of the other candidates who will stay home on election day. I’m a Ron Paul supporter but would vote in the general for whoever gets the nod…however this is not the case for a large number of other Paulistas, Romneyites, and I daresay Newtonians. They better start trying to rebuild some bridges.

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