With 3 weeks until caucuses, Gingrich remains on top in Iowa polls
December 12th, 2011
12:14 PM ET
2 years ago

With 3 weeks until caucuses, Gingrich remains on top in Iowa polls

Des Moines, Iowa (CNN) – Two new surveys, but the same poll position for the GOP presidential candidates in Iowa, the state which holds the first contest in the primary and caucus calendar.

According to an American Research Group, 22% of likely Republican caucus goers in Iowa say they support former House Speaker Newt Gingrich for their party's presidential nomination, with 17% saying they back former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and 17% supporting Rep. Ron Paul of Texas.

The survey indicates Texas Gov. Rick Perry at 13% support, with Rep. Michele Bachmann of neighboring Minnesota and former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, each at 7%. Bachmann and Santorum have been criss crossing the Hawkeye State.

The survey, released Monday with just over three weeks to go until Iowa's Jan. 3 caucuses, also indicates former Utah Gov. and former ambassador to China Jon Huntsman at 5%. Huntsman has been spending almost all of his time campaigning in New Hampshire, which holds its primary one week after Iowa.

Twelve percent questioned say they are undecided. The poll was conducted Dec. 8-11, after businessman Herman Cain suspended his presidential campaign and before and after Saturday night's GOP debate in Iowa.

Perry has jumped eight points from ARG's November survey, when he was at 5% support. Gingrich was at 27% in ARG's November poll, with Romney at 20% and Paul at 16%.

The survey was one of two released Monday.

According to a University of Iowa Hawkeye Poll, 30% of likely Republican caucus goers in Iowa say they support Gingrich for their party's presidential nomination, with 20% saying they back Romney and 11% supporting Paul.

The survey indicates that 9% say they support Bachmann, with 8% backing Perry, 5% supporting Santorum and Huntsman at 1%. Around 4% had said they were backing Cain, who suspended his campaign while the poll was being conducted.

A CNN/Time/ORC International poll released last week indicated Gingrich with a 13-point lead over Romney among likely caucus goers.

According to the University of Iowa survey, Gingrich's margin over Romney is smaller among "very likely" caucus goers, but larger among those "somewhat likely" to attend the caucuses.

"Gingrich faces at least two obstacles according to our data," says Fred Boehmke of the University of Iowa. "His run at the top may be starting to tail off as it has for previous front-runners. He also faces the challenge of turning out his supporters on caucus night, which will be critical since the gap between him and Romney is narrower among 'very likely' GOP caucusers and 'strong' Republicans."

The poll indicates that Gingrich's support is more than double Romney's among those who say they're backers of the tea party movement.

"Gingrich has become the tea party candidate in this race, and this bodes well for him," says the University of Iowa's Caroline Tolbert says. "Turnout of Tea Party supporters on caucus night could be key to his success in the state."

The American Research Group poll was conducted by telephone, with 600 likely Iowa GOP caucus goers questioned. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.

The Hawkeye Poll was conducted by the University of Iowa from Nov. 30 to Dec.7, before Saturday's debate in the Hawkeye state, with 277 likely Iowa Republican caucus goers questioned by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus six percentage points.


Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • Newt Gingrich • Polls
soundoff (60 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    Remind me to write Iowa a thank you letter on November 14, 2012.

    December 12, 2011 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
  2. Democrats answer to everything, TAX THE RICH, TAX BUSINESS

    While Newt was in Washington for a stint, I don't think he ever truly became one of them. He has shown a lot of success in reforming the federal bureaucracy and that was with a Democrat president so if he gets a Republican Senate and House you can count on some REAL reform in Washington thta will get this country back on the right path to growth and success FOR EVERYBODY.

    December 12, 2011 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  3. Rudy NYC

    Sniffit wrote:

    Remind me to write Iowa a thank you letter on November 14, 2012.
    ----------
    Good idea. Here's a rough draft. I think that you can send right now to the caucus for them to ponder while they rub elbows.

    Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
    With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
    Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
    A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
    Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
    Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
    Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
    The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
    "Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
    With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
    Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
    The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
    Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
    I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

    December 12, 2011 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  4. Rudy NYC

    Democrats answer to everything, TAX THE RICH, TAX BUSINESS wrote:

    While Newt was in Washington for a stint, I don't think he ever truly became one of them.
    ------------
    Think again. Smell the roses. Newt is a status quo candidate, through and through. Which explains why Mr. Gingrich has collected more than $100 million dollars [that we know about] in fees from corporations since he left Congress. Which explains why Mr. Gingrich can afford to have a $500k line of credit at Tiffanny's.

    December 12, 2011 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  5. Democrats answer to everything, TAX THE RICH, TAX BUSINESS

    Remind me to write Iowa a thank you letter on November 14, 2012.
    ====================================================
    You'll be pleased to hear Newt is polling ahead of Obama in Ohio and very close in other states.
    The Dems also begged to run against Ronald Reagan. How'd that work out?!

    December 12, 2011 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  6. Four and The Door

    "Gingrich has become the tea party candidate in this race, and this bodes well for him," says the University of Iowa's Caroline Tolbert says...
    _______________________________________________________________________________________________
    This stays interesting but encouraging. The Tea Party candidate is in the lead in Iowa. Here is one thing everyone should have learned in 2010. Tea Partiers do show up to vote. The more Obama tries to think of new ways to raise taxes and fan the flames of class warfare, the more people will gravitate towards this group. Interesting and encouraging.

    December 12, 2011 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  7. Lynda/Minnesota

    Sorry, GOPers. Old Newt and I go a long way back ... not personally, mind you. Just speaking philosophically, mind you. Doesn't matter who he says he is today. There is absolutely nothing presidential about this guy (policy or otherwise) that would cause me to even consider voting for him.

    December 12, 2011 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  8. GI Joe

    Ronald Regan (the alzheimer's pres.) has been dead and gone for a long time. His (Nanc's) astrologist ran the decisions from the white house. We don't need another one of those and we don't need no stinkin' bomb thrower like Gingrch in the White House either. Nuke the Newt. (that's from the 90's - the FIRST time he was rejected.

    December 12, 2011 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  9. Tim Malloy

    What happened to journalism? The obvious bias has eroded all credability.
    No one is listening.

    December 12, 2011 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  10. ST

    I can bet more than 10,000 dollars Romney did bet the other day, Gingrich he is not going to win in Iowa.

    December 12, 2011 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  11. Rudy NYC

    Democrats somebody wrote:
    Hinestly Rudy, where do you get this comedy? An totally unknown governor from UTAH that is Mormon. Yeah, a real front runner in your dreams.
    ----------------
    That was the rationale given by liberal pundits as to why a Republican would be chosen for the most important diplomatic posting second to the UN and Sec'y of State. Since you do not believe it, then why don't you tell me who had the greatest potential in Jan. 2009 to unseat Obama in Nov. 2012? Newt Gingrich??? Donald Trump??? Herman Cain???

    December 12, 2011 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  12. czubek

    Obama won't need to defeat Gingrich, the rank and file Republicans will do it for him.

    December 12, 2011 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  13. Democrats answer to everything, TAX THE RICH, TAX BUSINESS

    Sorry, GOPers. Old Newt and I go a long way back ... not personally, mind you. Just speaking philosophically, mind you. Doesn't matter who he says he is today. There is absolutely nothing presidential about this guy (policy or otherwise) that would cause me to even consider voting for him.
    ===============================================================================================
    From your posts I doubt you've ever voted for a Republican in your entire life. Your lack of consideration for Newt is hardly a surprise! Sort of like me saying I am not considering voting for Obama!!

    December 12, 2011 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  14. Al-NY,NY

    Lynda/Minnesota

    Sorry, GOPers. Old Newt and I go a long way back ... not personally, mind you. Just speaking philosophically, mind you. Doesn't matter who he says he is today. There is absolutely nothing presidential about this guy (policy or otherwise) that would cause me to even consider voting for him.
    -------

    but didn't you know he's very intelligent? He's also a great debator. I mean, c'mon. If that isn't a reason to vote for this philandering, lying, and opportunistic toad, I don't know what is

    December 12, 2011 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  15. underoverit

    @Four and The Dorr,

    i would like it explained to me how expecting a CEO, or millionaire/billionaire to pay a few % points higher in taxes is class warfare? When those people pay less in taxes a year than their secretary? Is paying more in taxes going to prevent them from being "job creators"? I would think not since they are not doing any "job creating" as they sit on piles of money. The only jobs they create are in China, India or some other country. Why because its cheaper labor and their wallets get fatter, meanwhile the cost of living in this country goes up. People in this country are NOT going to gravitate to the Tea Party because the middle class in this country has woke up and realized this so called "roots" movement would take us back to the 1800's where people worked for next to nothing,

    December 12, 2011 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  16. amanda

    Thanks to newt we would have been trillions in debt in the 1990's due to bill clinton's overspending! Newt is the real reason bill clinton had a surplus! Now newt is going to stop another overspending liberal named obama! if you vote for obama the usa will become the cccp mark my words!

    December 12, 2011 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  17. Four and The Door

    underoverit
    @Four and The Dorr,
    i would like it explained to me how expecting a CEO, or millionaire/billionaire to pay a few % points higher in taxes is class warfare?
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________
    They already do pay more...much more...than everyone else, both in real dollars and in percentage of their income. The taxpayers do not have a problem. The government has a spending problem and when the economy took a dive, families and businesses cut back but government spending went up. The problem is not the American taxpayer.

    December 12, 2011 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  18. Lee

    Much better than the draft dodger Mitt, who was hiding in FRANCE during the Vietnam War as a Mormon Bishop (and now he refuses to answer questions about how the Mormon cult's "Book of Mormon" differs from the bible.

    December 12, 2011 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  19. Luke Brown

    Amanda ... Newt was throw out of the Speaker's Office by his own party! That's right, even the Republicans in Congress knew that he is an immoral unethical plague on them. That he was having an affair with his intern turned mistress turned third wife while he was orchestrating the impeachment of Bill Clinton tells you everything you need to know about the man.

    How long do you think a man of his character could lead our country before the people demanded his impeachment?

    December 12, 2011 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  20. Sue

    "Democrats answer to everything, TAX THE RICH, TAX BUSINESS
    While Newt was in Washington for a stint, I don't think he ever truly became one of them."

    He was the Speaker of the House, Newt himself has said, if you are Speaker of the House, you are never an outsider again.

    December 12, 2011 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  21. anagram_kid

    Four and the Door,
    Since you are so obsessed with this, I am curious if you know the exact dollar amount or percentage your taxes have gone up under President Obama’s first term. Would you be willing to post that number to prove your argument?

    December 12, 2011 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  22. courage

    SO NEWTT lead already cut ... almost statistical TIE (5% margin of error) with Paul & Romney !!

    December 12, 2011 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  23. Gurgi

    @anagram_kid, To answer part of your question for "four and the door" my paychecks have dropped $45 thanks to Obama's tax increases. It would have been a larger drop but I got a 2% cost of living increase from my company. It was "woohoo, I got a pay raise," then "Oh crap, tax increases," leading to an overall drop in my paycheck.

    December 12, 2011 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  24. Eddie

    Two polls? That would be the Biggest Liar poll and the Most Conniving poll.

    December 12, 2011 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  25. Jana

    Newt is absolutely not what this country needs please get a good GOP candidate

    December 12, 2011 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
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