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Looking Past New Hampshire

by | Jan 11, 2012

By Dave Andrusko

Mitt Romney (right) and Rick Santorum, at a New Hampshire debate

By the time you read this post, the New Hampshire primary will be in full gear. With former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney comfortably ahead (although New Hampshire primaries are notoriously unpredictable), here are some related figures that might be of interest.

·         The Pew Research Center found a number of fascinating results on the eve of the first primary. Surveying 1,165 registered voters Pew found that exactly as many people said they would like to see President Obama re-elected as a Republican win—41%. Interestingly,  among  independents, the split was also exactly even, 36%/36%. 

Pew also found that former Senator Rick Santorum has surged among Republicans and Republican-leaning adults, although Romney is still ahead: 27% favor Romney for the GOP nomination to 16% each for Santorum and former Speaker Newt Gingrich. Rep. Ron Paul is next with 12%.

·         By contrast, US News’s “Washington Whispers” released a poll done yesterday by Synovate eNation which reported that twice as many people fear Obama’s re-election as fear he won’t be re-elected: 33% to 16%!

·         On the question of matchups between various Republican candidates and Obama, a  new CBS News poll shows Mitt Romney leading President Obama in a hypothetical general election matchup, 47% to 45% (including 45%-39% among independents). The President is ahead of Paul 46%-45%, Santorum 47%-43%, Gingrich 49%-41%, Texas Gov. Rick Perry 49%-42%, and former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman 48%-41%. 

·         Gallup reported today that Romney is “now the only candidate that a majority of conservative and moderate/liberal Republicans nationwide see as an ‘acceptable’ GOP nominee for president. Conservative Republicans are more likely to say Romney would be an acceptable nominee than either Newt Gingrich or Rick Santorum.” As shown below 59% of Conservative Republicans and 59% of moderate/liberal Republicans found Romney acceptable.

The obvious caveat is that these “acceptability” numbers have changed many times and could again.  In addition, Santorum was the candidate who expressed the largest gain in the five weeks since Gallup asked this same question.

·         This is not a number but a quote from the Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza

“ The South Carolina primary, which is set for Jan. 21, has long been circled on the calendars of political junkies everywhere for two big reasons: 1) The state has voted for the man who has gone on to win the Republican nomination in every primary since 1980 and 2) The state has a history of, how should we put this, contentious campaigns.”

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Categories: Politics