Polls: Romney on top in second straight survey
June 8th, 2011
10:28 AM ET
12 years ago

Polls: Romney on top in second straight survey

Washington (CNN) - For the second straight day, Mitt Romney is on the top of a national poll in the battle for the GOP presidential nomination, and does better against President Barack Obama in a hypothetical general election matchup than any other tested Republican White House hopeful.

According to a Quinnipiac University survey released Wednesday, a quarter of Republicans and GOP leaning independent voters say they would back the former Massachusetts governor and 2008 White House candidate if the 2012 Republican primary for president were held today. Fifteen percent of people questioned say they would support former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who is flirting with a bid for her party's nomination.

Businessman and radio talk show host Herman Cain is at nine percent, with former House Speaker Newt Gingrich at eight percent, as is Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, who is making his third bid for president. The poll indicates that Rep Michele Bachmann gets the support of six percent, with former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty at five percent and former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania at 4 percent. Former Utah governor and former U.S. Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman, who is likely to announce a bid, is at one percent, with one in five undecided.

"Whether it's because of the media coverage of his recent formal announcement, or the fact that Donald Trump and Mike Huckabee have dropped out, Gov. Romney has surged ahead of the Republican field," says Quinnipiac University Polling Center assistant director Peter Brown. "Until now Quinnipiac University's polls have shown many candidates bunched together in the mid-teens, now he has opened up some daylight on the field and is within six points of the president."

The Quinnipiac survey comes out a day after an ABC/Washington Post poll also indicated Romney on top in the GOP nomination horserace, at 21 percent, with Palin at 17 percent and everyone else in single digits.

In a hypothetical general election matchup with President Barack Obama, the Quinnipiac survey indicates Romney trailing Obama by a 47 to 41 percent margin. According to the poll, the president leads Pawlenty by 12 points, Huntsman by 14 points and Palin by 17 points. The survey also indicates voters are split on whether the president deserves re-election next year.

In the ABC/Washington Post poll, Romney holds a slight three point margin (within the survey's sampling error) over the president in a 2012 general election hypothetical matchup. All other candidates tested trail Obama.

The Quinnipiac poll suggests Romney's religion may be a problem as he makes a second bid for the White House. According to the survey, 36 percent of people say they are uncomfortable voting for a Mormon, including 17 percent who say they are "entirely uncomfortable." Huntsman is also a Mormon.

The Quinnipiac University poll was conducted May 31 through June 6, with 1,946 registered voters questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 2.2 percentage points.

The ABC/Washington Post poll was conducted June 2 through June 5, with 1,002 people questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error was plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

- On Monday, June 13, CNN will host the first New Hampshire Republican Presidential Debate, live from Manchester, NH at 8 p.m. ET. Follow all the issues and campaign news leading up to the debate on CNNPolitics.com and @cnnpolitics on Twitter.

Filed under: Mitt Romney • Polls
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. Lost in Texas FOREVER

    Yet it appears that hardly anyone in the GOP likes nor supports Romney. I still say with his constant flip/flops that he is about the only candidate that could actually debate himself. And if those who are against him is because of his so-called Romneycare, that seems not to bother some supporters so perhaps the HC debate isn't going to be an issue like they thought.

    June 8, 2011 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  2. Four and The Door

    People know that Mitt Romney understands how to manage the government and how to be effective with what the government can do to encourage economic recovery. He knows that genuine concern for the unemployed would result in doing what is necessary to encourage business growth and hiring rather than extending unemployment benefits and raising taxes. Mitt Romney is one of few politicians people can trust as capable of straightening out this mess.

    June 8, 2011 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  3. Rudy NYC

    Whaddya know? There are some Republican voters with brains.
    They seem to have realized that if Sarah Palin is against something, then it is probably something that they should be in favor of.

    June 8, 2011 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  4. Lynn

    All this focus on poll results this far out is a bit ludicrous. Romney leads Republicans by garnering 25%?! I think what should be of greater concern is the lack of support for a Mormon in the WH. What happens when Romeny actually has to step forward with an economic plan.....not just endless bashing of the president?

    June 8, 2011 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  5. Bob in PA

    Enough of the Polls, they are meaningless. How about tearing into a nice juicy tidbit about the current administration? Or is actual reporting against the rules here on the Ticker ?

    June 8, 2011 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  6. gt

    there is a life time between now and 2012.. but if jobs and the economy dont start to pick up...obama is gone....

    June 8, 2011 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  7. Lynn

    If "Romney is "one of the few who can straighten out this mess," why did Massachusetts rank 47th out of 50 in job creation during his tenure as governor?

    June 8, 2011 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  8. bb

    If you thought polls were worthless – SUMMER polls are particularly not worth the effort. Has always been the case. But hey, other Republican candidates – LOOK – Romney is beating you, what are you going to do about it?

    June 8, 2011 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  9. American

    These primary voters are showing an amazing double standard with regards to Romey-care, which Mitt called for almost the same health care plan as President Obama for the national level (including the mandate), yet tea partiers hypocritically accept it now with Romney?

    Mitt Romney unfortunately refuses to stand on any principle, choosing instead to flip-flop all over the place. Oh well, just remember: Bob Dole had similar numbers at the same time to President Clinton...

    June 8, 2011 10:54 am at 10:54 am |
  10. obama, hillary 2012

    obama, hillary 2012 this will be th end game after all the hype

    June 8, 2011 11:10 am at 11:10 am |
  11. once upon a horse

    these poll numbers are going to flip/flop as much as Mitt does himself. I wouldn't take them very seriously at this point.

    June 8, 2011 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  12. Rudy NYC

    Lynn wrote:
    If "Romney is "one of the few who can straighten out this mess," why did Massachusetts rank 47th out of 50 in job creation during his tenure as governor?
    Because Pawlenty(R-MN) beat out in the 48th slot, Barbour(R-AL) took 49th, and Perry(R-TX) came in at 50.
    Do you see a pattern here? The *greatest* governers in our nation, at least according to the GOTP.

    June 8, 2011 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  13. Anthony

    Republicans have spent so much time the last couple of years calling Obama's health care plan (based on Romney's Massachusetts health care plan) socialism, how are they going to turn around and support Romney? Are FOX News and right-wing radio going to swallow their pride and tell their followers that Obama's and Romney's plans are not so bad (after all, the Heritage Foundation, a Republican think tank, came up with the plan in the 1990s and Romney enacted it in Massachusetts in 2006)?

    June 8, 2011 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  14. SF

    And if he becomes POTUS, it will just show you how dumb and impatient Americans are! our two party system will be the death of our country!

    June 8, 2011 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  15. Dewayne

    Hidden inside this article is the big story; Herman Cain, the man who has little money, little known, but has a big message, is third!!

    June 8, 2011 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  16. Four and The Door

    Republicans have spent so much time the last couple of years calling Obama's health care plan (based on Romney's Massachusetts health care plan) socialism, how are they going to turn around and support Romney?
    Easy. ObamaCare is a convoluted mess that does not meet the objectives of lower cost health care or higher quality health care. And the scheme to 'pay for it' is a bad joke thats already falling apart. ObamaCare barely passed with a questionable political manuever in the Senate while Romneycare was a bipartisan effort. Romneycare was put together much more responsibly and has done better.

    Republicans really do support health care reform when it is done responsibly. ObamaCare was 99% politics and 1% health care. Turns out it will not be a political triumph for Obama after all.

    June 8, 2011 11:56 am at 11:56 am |