Poll: Santorum leads in Pennsylvania
March 14th, 2012
09:01 AM ET
2 years ago

Poll: Santorum leads in Pennsylvania

(CNN) –- A new poll released Wednesday indicates Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum is leading by a wide margin in his home state of Pennsylvania.

The former two-term senator from the Keystone State has the backing of 36% of registered Republicans, while 22% say they would vote for rival Mitt Romney.

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According to the Quinnipiac University survey, Rep. Ron Paul of Texas comes in third place with 12% and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich takes fourth with 8%. Eighteen percent are undecided.

Prior to being elected to the Senate in 1994, Santorum first represented the state as a congressman for two terms. He later lost his 2006 Senate re-election bid by 18 percentage points to Democrat Bob Casey Jr.

Wednesday’s poll was conducted entirely before Santorum pulled a southern sweep winning Tuesday’s primaries in Alabama and Mississippi, besting Romney and Gingrich, the two candidates who previously topped the polls ahead of the two Deep South contests.

In a hypothetical match up with Romney alone, Santorum holds a 20-point advantage of 52% to Romney’s 32%. In a contest with President Barack Obama, however, Santorum is statistically tied with the president, 44% to Obama’s 45%.

The poll also shows good news for Santorum in terms of the women’s vote, a base he has struggled with in recent months. Among Pennsylvania women, Santorum takes 41%, while Romney falls behind at 18%.

Pennsylvania holds its Republican primary on April 24.

Quinnipiac surveyed 508 Republicans by telephone from March 7 to March 13. The poll has a sampling error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.

Also see:

Romney speaks up for Hatch in new TV ad

Romney focused on Obama and gas prices, not competitors

Another Republican joins primary battle to face Gillibrand

Religion, gas prices, and beating Obama on the minds of Alabama voters


Filed under: 2012 • Pennsylvania • Rick Santorum
soundoff (32 Responses)
  1. sbssue1

    I guess there are more uneducated people in this country than I thought possible. Why aren't his kids in Catholic School if he's so "Catholic"? If he gets the nomination, Obama gets back in office. Maybe that's the plan so everyone can stay on food stamps and unemployment?!

    March 14, 2012 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  2. ST

    Good for Santorum BUT he will never bring happiness to peoples lives, as this depends on the quality of thoughts which he totally lacks.

    March 14, 2012 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  3. matt

    do you honestly think the country is going to be "better off" with Rick Santorum or Mittens Romney at the helm? their ideas are more radical and damning to the nation than Obama.

    March 14, 2012 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  4. diridi

    3rd century guy....but we are now in 21st century.

    March 14, 2012 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  5. Wake up people

    Food stamps are controlled by the individual states. President Obama has nothing to do with that. As for unemployment, you do realize you pay into it weekly. It is not a handout or a freebie. It is for people who lost their jobs and can't find another. You do realize that under Bush, many people myself included lost their jobs and if not for unemployment would have been in big troubl e. Watch yourself, you reap what you sow, if Mittens gets in office you may lose your job too and in need of both unemployment and food stamps.

    March 14, 2012 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  6. GI Joe.

    But....................PA is mostly democrat.

    March 14, 2012 09:34 am at 9:34 am |
  7. SEAL Team Alpha and Omega

    That's Ok Willard, America has already gottten rid of you, but it will be official in November.

    March 14, 2012 09:36 am at 9:36 am |
  8. Just Saying

    Santorum is supported by the Republicans in Pennsylvania. Big surprise there. They nominated this guy to run in a re-election bid where he lost by a historic margin. The Republicans in Pennsylvania, no smarter than Republicans in other places (which is to say, not very smart), supported him but the overwhelming majority of the people of Pennsylvania voted him out of office. If the Republicans put Santorum at the head of their ticket, or even in the number 2 slot, they will go down to defeat. We can only hope...

    Just Saying...

    March 14, 2012 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  9. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    We see the teavangelicals, Druids, Incas, Mayans and Taliban falling in line behind Rick. Mittens is now promising that he too, will attack women's rights, social security and medicare, health care, veterans benefits and give bigger tax cuts to the wealthy. Mittens' message may sound good to republicans, but his actions are so much different.

    March 14, 2012 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  10. Phil in KC

    Well, duh. It's his home state. I'd be more surprised if he weren't leading (and a little amused).

    March 14, 2012 09:38 am at 9:38 am |
  11. The Real Tom Paine

    18% undecided in a home state? That's not a good sign for Santorum.

    March 14, 2012 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  12. SEAL Team Alpha and Omega

    Hmmm . . . who does Santorum remind us of . . .???? Wait . . . I've got it! Picture Mr. Far, far, very, very Totalitarian extreme far-right donning a short little black moustache under his big long nose. Got it?

    March 14, 2012 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  13. gt

    they did not want him as senator...

    March 14, 2012 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  14. foodle

    PA voted him out by an 18% margin last time. He may be doing well with Republicans in PA, but he's going to have a lot of trouble winning the state in the general election (if he gets that far).

    March 14, 2012 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  15. Bran

    So the collective memory of PA voters is less than 6 years? We threw Santorum out of office by 18 points in 2006 becasue he proved to be so committed to bringing back the Dark Ages. And I can't understand why any woman would vote for him.

    March 14, 2012 09:48 am at 9:48 am |
  16. Ari3s

    No, Santorum reminds me of Ayatollah Khomeini...but with Christianity. I am from PA and believe me, we got rid of Mr. FecalMatter for good reason. I would honestly like to see Ron Paul win the state because he's the only one that talks straight and doesn't pander or baulk.

    March 14, 2012 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  17. Rudy NYC

    Wire Palladin wrote:

    Mittens is now promising that he too, will attack women's rights, social security and medicare, health care, veterans benefits and give bigger tax cuts to the wealthy. Mittens' message may sound good to republicans, but his actions are so much different.
    ---------------
    I think Mitt Romney seriously means what he says. He will vigorously attack women's rights. He will try to end Medicare by turning it into a voucher, which they will later cease funding. He will attempt to give away the middle class' retirement nest egg to Wall Street by resuming the battle begun under GWB to privatize the Social Security fund.

    In other words, disrupt, destroy, and desecrate on people's lives however and wherever they see a profit. It doesn't matter who the "R" in the elected office is, the agenda will be the same.

    March 14, 2012 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  18. Seattle Sue

    Santorum lost his last bid for office in PA six years ago by 18%. Have the people of PA forgiven him or have they just forgot?

    March 14, 2012 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  19. sbssue1

    To Wake Up People: Just how long do you think the State's money is going to last? Where do you think the States get their funds.....People pay in a minimal amount, but take out billions. You wake up! We have too many uneducated people looking for handouts and quite frankly, I'm tired of it. I have to support those who don't want to work and would rather stay home and party. We have many in our country who think the rich owe them, guess what send them to the third world countries and see how well they do. We will be a third world country if this crap keeps up. Wake up yourself.

    March 14, 2012 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  20. CoJo

    wow, what a bunch two face people are in Pennsylvania. No we don't want him in our state, but what the heck, he's great for the entire country.

    March 14, 2012 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  21. Fair is Fair

    "I've got it! Picture Mr. Far, far, very, very Totalitarian extreme far-right donning a short little black moustache under his big long nose. Got it?"
    -------
    Pretty disgusting comment.

    March 14, 2012 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  22. Rudy NYC

    Seattle Sue wrote:

    Santorum lost his last bid for office in PA six years ago by 18%. Have the people of PA forgiven him or have they just forgot?
    -----------–
    Neither. The poll strongly suggests that most PA Republican voters simply do *not* want MItt Romney as the nominee. It is what it is, like it or not. MItt Romney has no message, except for the one keeps implying by repeating "I can defeat Barack Obama."

    March 14, 2012 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  23. sbssue1

    I have to say, I personally know two women, who had two kids each (out of wed lock), we are paying their support because they won't work. They are fat, uneducated and live off the fat of the land.......our land. We give them housing, food stamps, and spending money. They are living better day to day then I am and I worked for the last 50 years. Wake up People, how do you purpose to handle these issues? This has to end.

    March 14, 2012 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  24. Al-NY,NY

    Pennsylvania.....Philadelphia on one end. Pittsburgh on the other...and Alabama in between. Perfect for Sanctimonious

    March 14, 2012 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  25. Rudy NYC

    sbssue1 wrote:

    To Wake Up People: Just how long do you think the State's money is going to last? Where do you think the States get their funds.....People pay in a minimal amount, but take out billions.
    ----------–
    Actually, your employer pays it, especially if they simply lay you off without just cause. The federal government has gotten involved funding unemployment checks because of the extensions beyond the "standard" 26 weeks that have been enacted since 2007. The federal government has been picking up the tab for the extensions beyond the standard 26 weeks.

    March 14, 2012 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
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