Perry takes lead in new Iowa poll; Update: Perry has double-digit national lead in PPP poll?

posted at 12:45 pm on August 23, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

A couple of caveats are in order before we start looking at this poll.  First, it comes from PPP, a Democratic pollster which has had its fair share of difficulties in sampling Republicans.  It’s also early in the race, as Rick Perry just starts getting vetted and Sarah Palin hasn’t yet begun to campaign, if in fact she decides to campaign at all.

Still, this is a rather dramatic result:

The race is pretty close four ways in Iowa but Rick Perry is the new favorite among Republican voters in the state. Among announced candidates he’s at 22% to 19% for Mitt Romney, 18% for Michele Bachmann, and 16% for Ron Paul. Further back are Herman Cain at 7%, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum at 5%, and Jon Huntsman at 3%.

If you throw Sarah Palin into the mix the numbers are pretty similar with Perry at 21%, Romney at 18%, Bachmann at 15%, Paul at 12%, and Palin registering at only 10%.

I’m surprised and a little skeptical about two results.  Mitt Romney’s strong performance in Iowa seems a little questionable.  While he has done some campaigning in the state, he has given the impression that he will focus less there than on a strong performance in New Hampshire.  I’d also have guessed that Palin would outperform Ron Paul in the state.  PPP does note that this survey shows Romney losing significant ground, from 26% in June.

Assuming this is accurate, then it looks like Michele Bachmann didn’t win much for her efforts in Ames.  I had written at the time that the straw poll seemed more likely to produce the #3 and #4 candidate than a frontrunner, and this poll suggests the same thing.  While Romney doesn’t necessarily need a good performance in Iowa, Bachmann has no path to the nomination without winning the state.  And it’s the Tea Party base that she courts that — so far — has swung instead to Perry:

Only 33% of Republican voters in Iowa identify themselves as members of the Tea Party but a broad advantage with them is driving Perry’s lead. He gets 32% to 22% for Bachmann, and 19% for Paul. Romney is all the way back in 6th place with those voters at only 6%. Romney doesn’t need to win Tea Party voters to win in Iowa but he needs to do a whole lot better than that. With the majority of Republicans who don’t consider themselves Tea Partiers Romney actually leads Perry and Bachmann with 30% to their 16% but it’s not enough to make up for his poor performance with the far right faction of the party.

It’s an interesting first look at the state since Perry’s entry.  We’ll see if this is a reliable indicator or an outlier when other pollsters conclude their own Iowa surveys.

Update: Not surprisingly, Romney leads in Michigan, where his father served as Governor.  The Epic-MRA poll had some bad news for another favorite son:

Romney leads Texas Gov. Rick Perry, 32 to 17 percent. The EPIC-MRA poll surveyed a relatively small sample size, but Perry’s strong second-place showing in a state outside his natural base across the South is notable.

Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., was third at 12 percent, while former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin all tied for fourth at 5 percent. Rep. Thaddeus McCotter, R-Mich., earned just one percent of the vote in his home state; of all the candidates tested on his home turf, McCotter had the lowest name-identification, as nearly half of Republican voters said they didn’t recognize his name.

Remind me again — why is McCotter running for President?

This poll had a significantly smaller sample size than PPP’s in Iowa (210 to 317, respectively), for a much more populous state.  As National Journal notes, the results are good news for Perry and another indicator that this will become a two-man race, barring any late entries.

Update II: PPP says they have a national survey coming out tomorrow that shows Rick Perry with a double-digit lead over Romney for the Republican nomination.  According to their Twitter feed:

11:34 (CT): Our national GOP poll, out tomorrow, is better for Perry even than the Iowa one. Double digit lead.

11:36: Nationally, if it came down to a 2 person race: Perry 52, Romney 36. Mitt needs to try to wrap it up before it gets to that point.

11:40: More evidence Bachmann has maxed out support- down 9 to Romney, 30 to Perry in national heads to heads

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Yes, better choices, especially interior sec.

right2bright on August 23, 2011 at 5:43 PM

and fold EPA and Dept of energy under Interior….

phreshone on August 23, 2011 at 6:03 PM

and fold dissolve EPA and Dept of energy under Interior….

phreshone on August 23, 2011 at 6:03 PM

FIFY.

Mary in LA on August 23, 2011 at 6:34 PM

and fold EPA and Dept of energy under Interior….

phreshone on August 23, 2011 at 6:03 PM

The EPA at the very least should be reduced to an advisory body only. Make recommnedations, and leave it up to states on whether to take action or not.

darwin on August 23, 2011 at 6:40 PM

Rick Perry needs Mitch Daniels or John Kasich.

JohnGalt23 on August 23, 2011 at 2:04 PM

You can have Mitch, but we’re keeping Kasich here in Ohio:-)

bluefox on August 23, 2011 at 6:42 PM

Another poll to make me smile from ear to ear :) Yes, I’ll wait to see if it’s an outlier but in the meantime, I’m going to enjoy smiling.

Only thing that concerns me is this:

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2011/08/16/romney_vs_perry_how_the_numbers_and_the_calendar_stack_up_110953.html

I’d hate for Perry to be the most voted for, but lose out to Mitt because he’s stronger in the later states.

On another note, the IA poll is interesting because of how much complaining the IA GOP bigwigs did about Perry “bigfooting” their precious straw poll. They just knew it would hurt him… well, it looks like they’re out of touch with their fellow Iowans.

And, an “lol” about Palin’s numbers, too.

-Aslan’s Girl

Aslans Girl on August 23, 2011 at 6:44 PM

The poll outfits have about as much integrity as MSNBC. Want to hold hands with that, especially in this cycle? Wake the hell up.

Limerick on August 23, 2011 at 6:01 PM

Polls can say whatever you want. Unless you know what the questions were and the R/D/I ratios. Registered Voters/Likely, etc.
Too many variables. Another thing they don’t take into consideration is fraud, LOL

bluefox on August 23, 2011 at 6:47 PM

Another thing they don’t take into consideration is fraud, LOL

bluefox on August 23, 2011 at 6:47 PM

Good to know I’m not the only one who knows a commercial when I see one (ok, HAheads..you can throw bricks now).

Limerick on August 23, 2011 at 6:49 PM

If this poll were completely fraudulent, wouldn’t it be showing Huntsman much stronger? He is the MSM’s candidate and if she started showing stronger in polls, the voters might be bamboozled into thinking he was an electable candidate. But, he’s at 3% in this one.

-Aslan’s Girl

Aslans Girl on August 23, 2011 at 7:09 PM

President Thaddeus McCotter

It just sounds really kewlll…

Seven Percent Solution on August 23, 2011 at 7:20 PM

…wouldn’t it be showing Huntsman much stronger?

Nope, the White House said they wanted to run against Perry, when the media is done with him, he’ll be making “I am not a witch” commercials.

He will be fully O’donnellized by Christmas.

A. Weasel on August 23, 2011 at 7:21 PM

A. Weasel on August 23, 2011 at 7:21 PM

In your dreams. Perry will never be reduced to “I am not a witch”. Only stupid COD was. Quayle was Quaylized and he never became the blubbering mess that COD became. Perry is an Alpha male and he will be juuuuust fine with whatever is thrown his way.

-Aslan’s Girl

Aslans Girl on August 23, 2011 at 7:24 PM

A New Yorker for Perry (link to Baseball Crank complete with electoral map).

Y-not on August 23, 2011 at 8:20 PM

. Want Perry up by 12%, put a check in the mail. Put Palin down by 30%, put a check in the mail. Make Huntsman Budda on a jetski, put a check in the mail.

The poll outfits have about as much integrity as MSNBC. Want to hold hands with that, especially in this cycle? Wake the hell up.

Limerick on August 23, 2011 at 6:01 PM

LOL…and they’re picking Perry’s VP before Perry even does a single interview or debate.

ddrintn on August 23, 2011 at 8:29 PM

LOL…and they’re picking Perry’s VP before Perry even does a single interview or debate.

ddrintn on August 23, 2011 at 8:29 PM

Debate? We might want to ask his Democrat opponent about that.

No grace…

Sharr on August 23, 2011 at 10:17 PM

and fold EPA and Dept of energy under Interior….

phreshone on August 23, 2011 at 6:03 PM

It keeps getting better…there is the best reason for Sarah not to run, the country would be better served with her working and organizing these cabinets posts.

right2bright on August 24, 2011 at 8:44 AM

Debate? We might want to ask his Democrat opponent about that.

No grace…

Sharr on August 23, 2011 at 10:17 PM

These “gotcha” questions are always tough, because the liberals have their talking points and stats already lined up…I remember an interview with Katie Couric…
Personally, I think Perry did fine and made the interviewer look pushy and aggressive…one thing they all need to learn, is to put the interviewer in their place.
A stock statement like “So you are digging into the liberal talking point garbage bag and pulling out this point? I have been down this road before, why don’t you first tell us what you want me to say, then I will state the truth?” Then attack his facts and figures as just talking points…because they don’t want an answer, it’s a trap.

right2bright on August 24, 2011 at 8:52 AM

Perry is an Alpha male and he will be juuuuust fine with whatever is thrown his way.

-Aslan’s Girl

Aslans Girl on August 23, 2011 at 7:24 PM

I lived in Texas for a couple years and Perry reminds me of a few I met there. They a-r-e different men than most anywhere in the country, underestimate them at your peril.

roy_batty on August 24, 2011 at 9:37 AM

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