Looks like Newt is leading in most early polls before the debate and PPP had Newt up by 6 a day before the South Carolina primary, where he won by more than twice that.
Gingrich has gained 12 points since a PPP poll conducted in Florida a week ago. Romney has dropped 8 points. Paul and Santorum have pretty much remained in place. Their favorability numbers show similar trendlines. Gingrich’s has increased 8 points from +15 (51/36) to +23 (57/34). Meanwhile Romney’s has declined 13 points from +44 (68/24) to +31 (61/30).
Here’s why that’s good news for Gingrich…
1) His supporters are more committed than Romney’s. 78% of his voters say they’ll definitely vote for him compared to 73% for Romney, and among folks whose minds are completely made up he leads by 9 points at 45-36.
2) If Rick Santorum drops out between now and next Tuesday, Gingrich will be the beneficiary. His voters prefer Gingrich over Romney 50-23, and in a field where he’s no longer a candidate Newt’s lead expands to 43-36.
3) Voters see him as better positioned ideologically than Romney. 52% think his views are ‘about right’ compared to 42% for Romney. Only 14% of voters think he’s ‘too liberal’ compared to 25% for Romney.
4) Newt is drawing out new voters. With the 11% of the electorate that didn’t vote in the 2008 primary, he leads 40-30. Meanwhile Romney is having trouble holding onto the folks who voted for him in 2008. 37% are supporting someone else this time, with 19% of them moving toward Gingrich. This was a big problem for Romney in Iowa as well- if he could just hold onto the folks who supported him last time he’d be winning easily. But he doesn’t inspire a passionate enough following to keep folks in the fold.
5) Newt’s continuing to do well with all the groups he dominated with in South Carolina. He’s up 42-23 with Evangelicals, 46-20 with Tea Partiers (Mitt’s actually in 3rd with them), 42-28 with men, and 44-23 with voters describing themselves as ‘very conservative,’ which is the largest ideological group in the Florida electorate.
More as it develops…
This entry was posted on Monday, January 23rd, 2012 and is filed under Florida, Polls, Republicans. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.