Iowa poll: 4-way battle 7 weeks from caucuses
November 15th, 2011
09:12 AM ET
3 years ago

Iowa poll: 4-way battle 7 weeks from caucuses

(CNN) - With the Iowa caucuses just seven weeks away, a new poll indicates that it's a four-way battle in the race for the GOP nomination in the Hawkeye State.

A Bloomberg News survey indicates 20% of Iowans likely to take part in the Republican caucuses say they support businessman Herman Cain for the nomination, with 19% backing Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, who's making his third run for the White House. Eighteen percent say they support former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who's making his second run for the GOP nomination and 17% backing former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

It's basically a four-way tie for the top spot when taking into account the survey's sampling error. The poll's Tuesday release comes seven weeks before Iowa's January 3 caucuses, which kick off the presidential primary and caucus calendar.

According to the survey, Texas Gov. Rick Perry's at 7%, Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota's at 5%, former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania's at 3% and former Utah Gov. and former ambassador to China Jon Huntsman's at 1%, with one in 10 unsure of who they'll support.

The poll also indicates that six in 10 say they could still change their minds on which candidate they are backing.

"In Iowa, it's long been a two-person race between Romney and someone else," said J. Ann Selzer, president of Selzer & Company, which conducted the poll for Bloomberg. "It is now a four-person race between Romney and three someone-elses."

Selzer and Co. is a West Des Moines-based firm that also conducts the Iowa Poll for the Des Moines Register.

More than seven in 10 say that fiscal concerns are most important to them, with only around a quarter of likely caucus-goers saying social or constitutional issues are their top concern.

The Bloomberg News poll was conducted between November 10-12 with 503 adult Iowans who say they are likely to vote in the state's Republican caucuses questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.

– Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @PSteinhauserCNN


Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • Polls • Republicans
soundoff (24 Responses)
  1. Phil in KC

    Well, I'll say this: for a bunch of Republicans, it's a diverse group. They each represent a different constituency within their party. I'm surprised Herman Cain is still polling this high. Maybe after this last embarrassment, his numbers will drop. I am also surprised by Ron Paul's showing. Every once in a while, this guy says something that seems to make sense. But most of the time, he's a fringe nut-job. Hard to believe that 19% of Republicans would want him to be president. But, what the hey – if they nominate him, Obama will win in a landslide.

    November 15, 2011 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  2. Lindsey

    Ron Paul is gaining traction now! Watch out!

    November 15, 2011 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  3. Johnson

    Sticking with Obama 2012

    November 15, 2011 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  4. Keith in Austin

    May the best man win! All are a vast improvement to what we have right now!

    November 15, 2011 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  5. Audience

    Ron Paul

    November 15, 2011 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  6. Jay

    Ron Paul has a better organization in Iowa than the other three combined.

    When Paul wins the Iowa Caucus the headline will be “Romney Second in Iowa.”

    November 15, 2011 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  7. dale in Texas

    No doubt this has quite a few spinmeisters spilling their coffee.
    Wouldn't be too surprised if a few jobs were lost over this snafu :)
    GO RON PAUL !!!!!!

    November 15, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  8. jacmicwag

    Great to see Paul finally making a move as he is the only one of the bunch who seems to have a handle on our economic problems.

    November 15, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  9. The Real Tom Paine

    Don't get too excited, people: what happened to the last person to win the GOP Iowa Caucus?

    November 15, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  10. Four and The Door

    All can beat Obama. The question is who can win large enough to sweep majorities in the Senate and House along with Governor races? I think Romney right now. He's got broad enough appeal and for all the right reasons. Experience, knowledge, vision, intelligence, integrity, ambition...

    November 15, 2011 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  11. Dreamer96

    I would rather vote for any school principal, Elementary, Middle/Secondary, or High School, then any of these GOP candidates...

    November 15, 2011 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  12. nick

    here's the key factor: Ron Paul supporters will VOTE on the caucus date while ambivalent Romney supporters stay home. Establishment GOP members expect for the traditional rank-and-file Republican to get the nomination. Well, they're in a for a surprise because this is Ron Paul's year when we go to vote!

    November 15, 2011 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  13. Rudy NYC

    Today's Republican Party is dysfunctional. It is a party in transition that seems hell bent on taking everyone and everything on an all or nothing ride into plutocracy. I used to trust their judgment, but not anymore. I look at the what is supposed to be the best Republicans have to offer, and I cringe.

    It is a scary thought to think that the candidates represent the best of the conservative best; that someone as demonstrably incompetent as Cain is at the top, that someone as demonstrably out of touch with the reality as Paul is at the top, that someone as demonstrably unpredictable as Romney is at the top, and that someone as demonstrably unprepared as Perry is at the top.

    November 15, 2011 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  14. P.G

    Unless the GOP chooses Huntsman, they have no chance with the independent voters you need to win.

    November 15, 2011 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  15. v_mag

    Why do Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina get to determine who the presidential candidates are? That system disenfranchises 90% of the American voters.

    November 15, 2011 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  16. SaintM

    Keith in Austin – spoken from a true Texas red neck from the state that brought us LBJ, GW Bush, D Cheney, Rick Perry, and actor Matthew McCaunaghey. Listen up America–the "brain trust" population of Texas is what we should all aspire to be.

    Keith, have a nice hot day with no water to keep you cool.

    November 15, 2011 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  17. Informdvtr

    Here we go, Ron Paul! Here we go!

    November 15, 2011 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  18. Jariv

    Romney 2012!!! He is the smartest of the bunch and the person that can really put this country back on track and better than before.

    November 15, 2011 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  19. billion

    Don't miss this information from the poll:

    "There’s good news in the poll for Paul, 76, a Texas congressman who has attracted ardent supporters. Among likely caucus-goers who say their minds are made up, Paul leads with 32 percent, followed by Romney at 25 percent and Gingrich, a former House speaker, at 17 percent."

    November 15, 2011 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  20. imagrandpa

    People, Ron Paul is our best shot to save the Republic.

    Go Ron Paul !!!!

    November 15, 2011 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  21. namenamename

    Finally the media admits that Ron Paul is true top tier.

    November 15, 2011 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  22. Wes

    Wait there's a four way race? Who is this Ron Paul guy? I didn't even know he was running. I mean I heard of Bachman, Romney, Perry, Cain and now Gingrich cause that's all the media reports on. I never saw this Paul character before???

    November 15, 2011 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  23. Colorado Man

    I support Gary Johnson but I'm looking into Ron Paul. Paul kinda worries me but I think he's a better bet then any of the other GOP candidates. Not sure he's better then Obama. I do think Johnson would be better then Obama though.

    November 15, 2011 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  24. Lee

    Ha ha, they have been trying as hard as they can to discount Ron. He gets no debate time, any straw poll or online victories are written off in one sentence as simply the result of his "crazy" support base, while anyone else who wins is provided a full front page for a day.

    November 15, 2011 11:01 am at 11:01 am |