POLL EARTHQUAKE – AT 8:16 P.M. ET: A new Rasmussen poll, just out, shows the impact Rick Perry has already had on the GOP race.
Texas Governor Rick Perry, the new face in the race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, has jumped to a double-digit lead over Mitt Romney and Michele Bachmann with the other announced candidates trailing even further behind.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of Likely Republican Primary voters, taken Monday night, finds Perry with 29% support. Romney, the former Massachusetts governor who ran unsuccessfully for the GOP presidential nomination in 2008, earns 18% of the vote, while Bachmann, the Minnesota congresswoman who won the high-profile Ames Straw Poll in Iowa on Saturday, picks up 13%.
Texas Congressman Ron Paul, who was a close second to Bachmann on Saturday, has the support of nine percent (9%) of Likely Primary Voters, followed by Georgia businessman Herman Cain at six percent (6%) and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich with five percent (5%). Rick Santorum, former U.S. senator from Pennsylvania, and ex-Utah Governor Jon Huntsman each get one percent (1%) support, while Michigan Congressman Thaddeus McCotter comes in statistically at zero.
Scott Rasmussen comments:
“Governor Perry is enjoying a bounce from entering the race at precisely the right time”, said Scott Rasmussen. “Now the difficult part begins for the new frontrunner. It’s much easier winning support when people are hoping you will get in the race, than retaining support when you are the frontrunner.”
COMMENT: Very impressive for Perry. But what really stuns me is the fading back of Mitt Romney, who, just days ago, was the supposed frontrunner. I think it indicates how little enthusiasm there is for Romney, at least right now.
Perry still has a tough job ahead, even within the Republican Party. His 29% is far from a majority, and there are plenty of doubters. He must run a presidential campaign, which would be the best strategy to push the doubters out of his path. Sometimes the best way to run for the nomination is to act as if you already have it, and run against the guy in the White House. The doubters argue that Perry is strictly regional, not presidential. Show us, Governor Perry.
As for Michele Bachmann, I'm sure she'll remain a force. But today she came out with another of the gaffes that have plagued her, asking a crowd in South Carolina to join her in wishing "happy birthday" to Elvis Presley. Trouble is, it isn't Presley's birthday. It's the anniversary of his death. The media picked it up.
This is getting very exciting.
August 16, 2011