Monday, February 13, 2012

PPP: Michigan Primary Santourm 39%, Romeny 24%

Rick Santorum's taken a large lead in Michigan's upcoming Republican primary. He's at 39% to 24% for Mitt Romney, 12% for Ron Paul, and 11% for Newt Gingrich.
Santorum's rise is attributable to two major factors: his own personal popularity (a stellar 67/23 favorability) and GOP voters increasingly souring on Gingrich.  Santorum's becoming something closer and closer to a consensus conservative candidate as Gingrich bleeds support.
Santorum's winning an outright majority of the Tea Party vote with 53% to 22% for Romney and 10% for Gingrich. He comes close to one with Evangelicals as well at 48% to 20% for Romney and 12% for Gingrich. And he cracks the 50% line with voters identifying as 'very conservative' at 51% to 20% for Romney and 10% for Gingrich.
Santorum's benefiting from the open nature of Michigan's primary as well. He's only up by 12 points with actual Republican voters, but he has a 40-21 advantage with the Democrats and independents planning to vote that pushes his overall lead up to 15 points. Santorum is winning by a healthy margin in every region of the state except for Oakland County, where Romney has a 40-26 advantage, and the area around Lansing where Paul actually has an advantage at 30% to 27% for both Romney and Santorum.
Republican voters aren't just declining to vote for Gingrich at this point- they don't even like him anymore. Just 38% have a favorable opinion of him to 47% with a negative one. His numbers are inching back closer to what they were before his surge in the polls began in November. His continued presence in the race is a boost to Romney though. 54% of his supporters would go to Santorum if he dropped out, compared to only 21% for Romney and 14% for Paul. Santorum's lead in a Newt-less field would expand to 21 points with him at 48% to 27% for Romney and 13% for Paul. So every day Gingrich stays in is a saving grace for Romney's hopes.
Michigan is perceived as a state where Romney really has a home field advantage, but only 26% of primary voters actually consider him to be a Michigander while 62% do not. Only 39% have a favorable opinion of George Romney with a 46% plurality having no opinion about him.  Romney really doesn't have some great reservoir of goodwill in Michigan to fall back on. Only 49% of voters have a favorable opinion of him to 39% with a negative one. That's down a net 28 points from our last poll of Michigan in July when he was at +38 (61/23).
For all that, Santorum probably shouldn't get too comfortable. There is a lot of potential for fluidity in the Michigan race, with only 47% of voters saying they're strongly committed to their candidate while 53% are open to changing their minds in the next two weeks.
Romney's support is a little more firm with 52% of his voters saying they'll definitely end up supporting him compared to 46% who say that for Santorum. This situation is reminiscent of what happened in Florida right after Newt Gingrich's big win in South Carolina- he took the lead then quickly lost it in a big way after coming under attack by Romney. Given how open voters are to changing their minds a repeat of that in Michigan would not be a huge surprise.

1 comment:

  1. Republicans Can’t See The Forest For The Trees.

    I cannot understand why the republican voters are so naive and gullible when it comes to voting for Santorum.

    The liberal left has literally pulled a fast one on the republicans of Michigan and across this country. The liberals want Santorum to win because they know he cannot beat Obama. The die-hard conservative republicans cannot see the forest for the trees.

    The fickled republicans have gone from voting for a political sinner in Newt Gingrich to the political preacher in Santorum all within a month.

    Americans may not like the socialist dictator in Obama, but they really don't want a self-professed preacher and sanctimonious leader who is going to lectured people on religious principles.

    When was the last time we had a candidate who alienated a voting group in the republican party like Ron Paul who has serve as a congressional leader for many years and served in the military.

    Santorum does not respect his peers or the minority groups in this country. Just recently while on the campaign trail, he told an antagonist to go get a job. I cannot imagine Abraham Lincoln or Ronald Reagan talking to a fellow American in this manner.

    I doubt very much that Santorum can beat Obama. It will be like the choir boy of the Catholic church trying to replace the Pope. When are republicans going to wake up and demonstrate some common sense in their voting habits.

    The republican party is having an identity crisis and it won't really become clear until they lose another election and lose all credibility as a political party.

    I don’t want a preacher for a president like Santorum, I want an experience leader and Mitt Romney is the obvious choice to face Pres. Obama and everyone knows it except the republicans that can’t see the forest for the trees.