Rick Perry is in the race and he has shook things up. There is some good news, even for those who do not like Perry. Mitt Romney is no longer the frontrunner.
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.
The full story is here: http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/elections/e...
What does this mean?
Perry’s launch into the race was masterful. He came out with a strong message and a well-orchestrated entry. His first campaign commercial was almost iconic with references to him as the “jobs governor” and images of Perry on his Texas ranch. Cowboy imagery always plays well with Middle America as does Perry’s cred as a self made man.
The conventional wisdom was Perry would take votes away from Bachmann. His entry certainly did take some but if Rasmussen’s numbers are right, he has taken a lot more away from Romney than from Bachmann.
The consensus among the Tea Party seems to be that Bachmann is the best Tea Party candidate. That is not a universal feeling, but it seems to be a strong feeling. Almost no one in the Tea Party movement wants to see a Romney Presidency. A Romney Presidency would be little more than a second term for Obama.
Perry may be an acceptable second choice to many members of the Tea Party who favor Bachmann.
The good new is, Perry’s bounce has bounced Romney out of his front-runner status. The Tea Party has two goals here. We must block Romney from getting the nomination and we must defeat Obama.
Perry’s bounce probably won’t last and the race will tighten up among the three front-runners. However, Perry’s entry is clearly hurting Romney more than Bachmann and no one in the Tea Party is crying about that.