GOP 2012 poll: Romney & Palin in top spots
May 26th, 2011
08:15 AM ET
12 years ago

GOP 2012 poll: Romney & Palin in top spots

Washington (CNN) - Mitt Romney and Sarah Palin sit atop a new poll in the battle for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination.

The Gallup survey, released Thursday, was the first national poll conducted following the announcements by Mike Huckabee and Donald Trump that they would not run for the White House and partially before and after Mitch Daniels' announcement that he also would not make a bid for his party's nomination.

According to the survey, 17 percent of Republicans and GOP leaning independents say they would support Romney and 15 percent say they would back Palin for their party's nomination.

Romney, the former Massachusetts governor and 2008 GOP White House hopeful is an all-but-declared presidential candidate. He's been beefing up his campaign staff in recent months and formed a presidential exploratory committee in early April. Palin, the former Alaska governor and 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee, has made few public moves toward launching a campaign, but has never ruled out a run. In recent weeks she has hinted that a bid is a possibility.

The poll indicates that Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, who's making his third run for the White House, is at ten percent, followed by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich at nine percent, former Godfather's Pizza CEO and radio talk show host Herman Cain at eight percent, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty at six percent, and Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota at five percent. Former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson and former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania are tied at two percent, with just over one in five questioned saying they have no opinion.

The Gallup poll was conducted May 20 through May 24, after Trump and Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor and 2008 GOP presidential candidate, announced they would not run for the White House.

Daniels, the Indiana governor, announced he would not make a bid on May 22. Gallup says Daniels' name was removed for the last two days of questioning, and Daniels' supporters second choice was substituted for results from the first two days of polling.

The survey also looks at what the race would look like if Palin decided against a bid. Without her in the mix, Romney stands at 19 percent, followed by Gingrich and Paul at 12 percent and everyone else in single digits.

The Gallup poll questioned 971 Republicans and GOP leaning independents by telephone. The survey's sampling error is plus or minus four percentage points.

- Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @PsteinhauserCNN

Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Polls • Sarah Palin
soundoff (59 Responses)

    Your going down Obama and it will be by the one just like the taking out of Bin Laden. You'll never see it coming. But it will be by the one you fear the most. PALIN 2012

    May 26, 2011 09:40 am at 9:40 am |
  2. Rudy NYC

    Maybe the Mayans are right about 2012.

    May 26, 2011 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  3. Jaime

    If these are the top runners, then maybe now is the time for Ron Paul. I am serious. As a democratic voter, I would switch for Ron Paul. Who else would immediately end foriegn wars, and cut defense expenditures which amount to a quarter of our entire budget? Who else would be qualified to say, "No" to the patriot act? Who else can we trust to defend our liberties when the executive branch has become WAY too strong under Bush, Clinton, Bush, and even Obama.

    I am not kidding, the only person who would make me switch parties is Ron Paul. He's the only one who I would vote for over Obama.

    Because let's be real: Obama is NOT the wost president ever (sorry right wing talk radio). Palin is not competent. Romney doesn't have any solid principles.

    May 26, 2011 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  4. And the nuts just keep on coming

    The best news I heard all day. If I was Romney I would drop out right now rather than lose to Palin. What an embarrassment for a guy who actually has done something with his life. The republican loss in the special election yesterday is just the beginning. I have news for the republican leadership. That loss was not about medicare. That loss was about the sorry state of the republican party and how it has been hijacked by the right wing, tea party, religious hacks who speak for 1 percent of the population of the United States. Let them all move to South Carolina and cecede from the union (or Texas for that matter). Good riddance.

    May 26, 2011 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  5. once upon a horse

    in a way this is GREAT...I would love to see these two debate each other. In fact Palin is so thin skinned I don't think she could handle being publicly called out by another GOPer and have to defend herself away from FoxNews, FaceBook or Twitter. That is UNLESS they are going to handle her with kid gloves and softball questions. Heck NO! They should go at it like Clinton and Obama did in 2008...I BET Palin couldn't take it. She would blame anything negative said about her on the "evil left wing media" even though it would be coming from another Republican.

    May 26, 2011 09:46 am at 9:46 am |
  6. Sniffit

    Oh man...I sooo hope Jaberwocky Barbie gets it. I can't imagine more fitting symbology for the state of our nation's politics and the two major parties than watching a debate between a Dem who is one of the most inspiring, eloquent and articulate American orators we've seen in decades and a GOPer who is a mindless, winking talking point parrot whose cacaphonic word salad utterances almost peel the paint from the living room walls. Good on ya, GOPers. Hope your tea helps the crow go down.

    May 26, 2011 09:47 am at 9:47 am |

    Sarah Palin would make a much better president then Barack Obama. She was a much better Governor then Barack Obama is President. The Democrats and liberal media are afraid of her and they should be. She is a Winner.

    May 26, 2011 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  8. Sniffit

    Just wait until her propaganda film convinces everyone in the GOP that she's a brilliant, highly edumacated, eminently compentent victim of a liberla media conspiracy in which her obviously brilliant, clever and innovative ideas and oration are dubbed over with silly, trite, self-righteous talking point garbledigook. Then the fun begins.

    The GOP's 2012 POTUS effort is going to be comic gold....well...until it degenerates into frantic and desperate demagoguery and outright lying. Oh wait, sorry...already there.

    May 26, 2011 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  9. Jess C

    It's clear that 15% of those polled here are complete and careless morons who could even think of putting a terribly incompetent idiot like Palin in any position of responsibility for this country. Embarrassing.

    May 26, 2011 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
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