(CNN) – Rick Santorum, who last week enjoyed a 10-point nationwide lead over Mitt Romney, is now within one point of his chief GOP rival after dropping several points in Gallup's daily tracking poll.
The survey taken February 22-24 showed Santorum with the backing of 31% of registered Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, down two points from Friday and down five points from his peak on Wednesday.
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Support for Romney rose to 30%, a much-needed boost for the candidate who stood at 25% on Wednesday.
For the ongoing poll, Gallup surveys more than 1,000 registered Republican voters on a daily basis. The poll drops the oldest of five days each day and adds results from the most recent day of polling.
In the latest survey, Gallup questioned 1,153 Republicans and Republican-leaning independents by telephone between February 20 and February 24. The survey has a sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.
The results Saturday include two days of polling after CNN's Republican presidential debate in Arizona, the final time the four candidates squared off before key contests in Michigan and Arizona next week, as well as the votes in 10 states on Super Tuesday, March 6.
The two other candidates in the race, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Texas Rep. Ron Paul, were both well behind the two front-runners. Gingrich stood at 16% and Paul was at 11%. Neither Gingrich nor Paul has seen a change in his numbers since Thursday.
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I heard Santorum say his vision of healthcare was the individual managing without government assistance. Got it... That means Santorum is running on a platform of no Medicare or Medicaid. I hope it makes that clear to all senior citizens.
Maybe you right wingnuts and teavangelicals could help me out; if you ask the Lord for forgiveness and apologize for your wrongdoing, are you just another appeaser?
Oh, too bad. I was hoping Santorum would be the nominee. The election would have been a slam dunk for Obama. Now with Romney we'll have to contend ourselves with a mere landslide victory.
Vet4RonPaul – I agree that Ron Paul is more "pro-life" than many of the other politicians that claim to be. Good point.
Hey they want to "moderate" my comments! Are they doing that to you too! What about freedom of speech? Only if you say what they want you tp say. Welcome to America!
It doesn't get any better than this if you are a Dem. Best of all possible worlds is that the Republican base sends Satan (another word for Santorum) out to do battle with us in November. He has no chance but the pathological right wing fringe that is the rank and file of the Republican party won't accept the fact that only moderates can make the oval office. Sarah Palin was the last one sent packing. McCain would have won otherwise. This time it will be Satan and he will be sent packing too. Keep'em coming. It may take a full 8 years to bail the country out the the 08 crash (caused by W).
Santorum is a bigot who cannot represent the diverse population of the U.S. due to his severe right-winged religious and social agenda, which includes discrimination against women, citizens of different faiths, and citizens that do not subscribe to a religious faith.
The GOP ended up with these choices because of the Palinization of the Republican Party–not the kinder, gentler George Herbert Walker Bush the elder we once knew, and for whom I voted twice. My last Republican vote.
Is he wearing make-up?
The truth is too truthful? Do you fear others will know too much? Or wake up and understand the true agenda? I'm watching you... and speaking out.
The GOP is no longer the Grand Ol' Party.
There is nothing grand about all this extremism and hatred towards minorities, gays, veterans, the poor, and everyone else in between.
What a pathetic field of GOP/Tea Party candidates: a wife cheater with a baggage load of character issues, a culture warrior who can't control the absurdity that comes out of his mouth, a flip flopper with zero charisma, and a libertarian with crazy fringe ideas. What a joke when a candidate with only 30% can claim to be a front runner. Be great to see them bash each other all the way to the convention.
Obama will win. AP has Obama beating either Santorum or Romney by 9%
These Republican have no message the only thing they are good for is dirty politics nothing else. president Obama will get elected for second term with no problem.
Rick makes me "SICK"...
There's over 300 million Americans the GOP could have picked candidates from. I find it hard to believe that these four were the best they could do.
can't be on top of the trash heap forever
It is beginning to look like people are noticing that the Republicans are pushing social issues more than anything else. And some of those social issues that Santorum and the rest of the conservatives are proposing mean women could be denied something as simple as birth control pills (see Virginia) and be forced to have invasive procedures done against their will. Men might still be able to get Viagra covered by their insurance, but it would be pointless as women will be keeping their legs together holding that asprin in place. I believe the Catholic top brass is against divorce. So what next, will Republicans propose that divorce be outlawed?
that's a really sad news ,,, I really hoped Santorum would win the nomination, that would have been a glorious day for the freedom in America and the end of the GOP/Tea Party as a politically relevant organization in the history of the USA.
We would finally have a real decent government.. yes because if Santorum won the GP nomination, essentially everyone would vote for Obama, even former slavists in the South would prefer Obama than a delayed brain like Santorum .. helas, we might not get so lucky .. don't take me wrong, Oabam will win, but if Mit wins the nomination, the GOP might survive, which is not a good thing
It is no wonder that money makes lot of difference. If two candidates are equally good or bad as Rodney or Santorum, Romney is going to win over just that few percentage points over Santorum in the end.
We need the people to awaken and nullify the big money Super PACs and Rich and influential people backing the candidates.
Obama's campaign advisers have the easiest job in the world. Just let'em keep talkin'.
How did the GOP get to this point? Ignorance is a requirement for entrance. Sad and scary that the adults don't take control.
Oh God help America......save us from mitt,santo,or newton......
Palin, Trump, Bachmann, Perry, Cain, Gingrich, Romney, Santorum. Who is the next frontrunner? Lawdy, this is the most pitiful excuse for possible candidates–even the Obama haters don't know whether to puup or go blind.
Oh darn!!!!! I was really looking forward to life in a theocracy.