Santorum ahead before Tennessee Super Tuesday vote
February 27th, 2012
01:13 PM ET
2 years ago

Santorum ahead before Tennessee Super Tuesday vote

(CNN) – Just over a week before polls open in Tennessee, a poll released Monday showed former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania well ahead among registered voters likely to vote in the state's Super Tuesday primary.

The state has the third most delegates of the 10 states to vote next Tuesday, and Santorum edged out former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney 33% to 17%, a 16-point gap in the Vanderbilt Poll.

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Texas Rep. Ron Paul had 13% support and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, 10%. Ten percent said they were interested in none of those four candidates, and 14% had not yet decided whom to support. The support numbers included voters pressed to choose a candidate, after initially saying they were undecided.

Early voting there started nearly two weeks ago, on Feb. 15. The poll was conducted from Feb. 16 through 22.

Santorum has an advantage among several groups including tea party members, those sympathetic to the movement and born again Christians. Tea party members made up 25% of the sample and put him 33 points in front of Romney.

The state which went for Sen. John McCain of Arizona by 15 points in the 2008 general election and President George W. Bush by 14% in 2004 appears to be much closer this cycle. The poll's sponsors said the survey indicates "Santorum and Romney would narrowly defeat Obama, while races against Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich would be too close to call."

Gingrich campaigns in the state on Monday, and over the weekend said he hopes to "do very well in Tennessee." His home state of Georgia also votes on Super Tuesday. Santorum told CNN National Political Correspondent Jim Acosta last week that Tennessee is one of several Super Tuesday states on his mind as he looks to accumulate delegates.

The Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions at Vanderbilt conducted the survey by telephone. It includes 1,508 registered voters and had a sampling error of plus or minus 3 points.

Also see:

Gingrich tells evangelicals: 'We need to stand up for ourselves'

Limbaugh front and center in pro-Santorum mailer

Romney: 'I can't be perfect'

Graham, McCain predict big primary night for Romney


Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Newt Gingrich • Polls • Rick Santorum • Ron Paul • Tennessee
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Orchid333

    A guy who runs on a stump speech about how going to College is not important? Yeah, no thanks. None of these yahoos are going to see the inside of the oval office anytime soon.

    February 27, 2012 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  2. Alison

    Every woman in that photo showing support of Santorum should be ashamed of themselves. That he has any women supporting at all him is absurd, in my opinion.

    February 27, 2012 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  3. CoJo

    well we have finally heard it from Santorum's mouth.
    1- he does not believe in separation of state & church. He said this in Michigan. Implies he WILL dictate your religion and your way of life. Obviously this mean he does not believe in the Constitution of the US.
    2- he does not believe people should go to college. Why? because they don't come out as a hard core evangelical like he is. He even would prefer to have every child educated at home like he was. No need for school at all.

    February 27, 2012 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  4. Renee

    To bad Romney: 'I can't be perfect'

    February 27, 2012 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  5. R

    He's not getting my vote; but then again, neither is Romney or Obama. All three do not offer any new ways of handling the issues that we have in America today – just the same tired tactics that both parties have tried and used over the years. We need a new political party in this country now – one that actually wants to take care of these issues, not point fingers at people on the other side. We've had enough of that already with nothing good coming from it.

    February 27, 2012 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  6. Rudy NYC

    This race is going to the convention. No one is going to finish with a majority of delegates.

    February 27, 2012 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  7. diridi

    This idiot never wins....true, true, true...It may be Romney v/s President. Of course, Obama will win big...this time. Because nasty drama like Robo Calls, and DVDs by thugs party republicans never works. see GM=Alive, Bin Laden=Dead. True, true, true...Obama2012. Period.

    February 27, 2012 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  8. Kevin

    I would like to personally thank the republican crowd for buying the shiny box with a pretty bow, without looking inside. I will get richer due to lack of ability to see the big picture. It is wonderful that speculators can buy up the supply after being deregulated. If the Keystone pipeline is approved will drive prices up higher when the resources to process the oil for export is tied up. My oil investments should really pay off. I love the deregulation that allowed the big box companies to move over to China. The record profits will make my investments payoff. One sad note to that is the middleclass that makes up the consumer group is almost gone. Got to love globalization, now I can invest in cheaply made crap that makes money. The dumb up of education is very encouraging. The future class of worker bees holds promise. The no kid left behind and standardized testing was truly inspired. Imagine dumb up education to the slowest one in the classroom. I love trickle down, not having to pay a high rate of taxes on my profits. To think people actually think I am going to invest money to build stuff in the USA, when there is no middleclass to buy it. It is so great to have the right to bet on failures and legally hide money now that Wall Street was deregulated. The profit opportunity is tremendous. I love that the loan companies were leaned on to make variable rate and high-risk loans to hide the recession in Bush presidency. Man, did I rake it in on the large amount of customers and got to make money off the foreclosures. I love the push for small business; man does it save on labor cost. It is fantastic to pay so little to employees now. I send my love to all of the Republicans out there.

    February 27, 2012 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  9. nothing new here

    In the past, Tennessee has been a red, conservative state. But even these latest polls are showing that a relative portion of the GOP voters are dissatisfied with the candidates, or still uncommitted to any particular one.
    10% not interested in any of the candidates.
    14% still uncommitted.
    And a slim margin of voters that would probably vote GOP over Obama.
    Maybe Tennessee is moving towards a shade of purple.

    February 27, 2012 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  10. Luke

    The Republican party will have to split in order to survive the influence of the tea party and the religious zealots.

    February 27, 2012 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  11. Larry in Houston

    @Kevin – I don't blame you – After "Dubya" got re-elected – that's exactly what happened in this country – and everytime a republican gets in – the people with money to invest – does it , time & time again. exactly what you do. The republicans wants to make the average regular working person extinct.

    February 27, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  12. Jules

    Santorum is exactly the candidate that the Tea Party and the GOP deserve. The Tea Party because they continually pulled the party to the far right and the GOP because no one had the guts to stop them. Santorum is a religious snob, so says this born again Christian. Couldn't pay me enough to vote for this guy.

    February 27, 2012 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  13. Hugganoak

    "....and Santorum edged out former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney 33% to 17%, a 16-point gap in the Vanderbilt Poll."
    You can tell CNN is in the bag for Romney. a 16 point gap, but Santorum only "edged out" Romney. LOL!

    February 27, 2012 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |