Gallup tracking poll puts Romney up nationally by … one point

posted at 3:15 pm on January 23, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Hey, Mitt Romney can finally look at a poll today where he’s leading.  Unfortunately, it’s still bad news for Romney, as the Gallup national tracking poll shows Newt Gingrich has closed to within one point over the last three days.  Romney now leads Gingrich only 29/28, dropping one point while Gingrich rose three overnight.  That means that polling over the last couple of days has gone for Gingrich as the race heads into Florida.

There is more bad news in the poll as well.  Romney continues to do well in Gallup’s polling in the “trial heat” head to head matchup against Obama, scoring a 48/50 against the incumbent.  However, Gingrich picked up four points overnight in the same poll to get to the exact same 48/50 rating, which helps Gingrich make the argument that he’s at least as electable against Obama as Romney.

This makes the stakes for tonight’s debate in Florida that much higher for Romney.  He has to find ways to reverse the momentum and start putting distance between himself and Gingrich, which he started to do yesterday and today by hammering Gingrich over his connection to Freddie Mac.  That’s a rather silly line of attack, though, and Romney has another obstacle in the fact that both of them have very similar positions on issues — and the same track record on them, too.  If Romney wants to take an effective line of attack tonight, he should concentrate entirely on Gingrich’s fall from grace with Republicans the last time he was trusted with a national leadership position and contrast that with his own successful executive experience. That’s probably the only issue that will have conservatives reconsidering their recent adoption of Gingrich as the alternative to Mr. Inevitable.

For Gingrich, the strategy tonight will have to be finding a balance between attacking Romney and demonstrating statesmanship in the GOP.  He achieved that last debate by attacking the media more than Romney, but we’ll see if NBC provides Gingrich that opportunity tonight.  Gingrich learned in Iowa that he can’t go all soft-focus in debates or on the campaign trail, and perhaps relearned James Carville’s old political adage that your opponent can’t land a punch while you have your fist in their face.  The tax return issue is off the table now, though, and Gingrich can’t effectively attack on the RomneyCare program he hailed six years ago in his own newsletters.

Rick Santorum certainly can, though, and will against both Gingrich and Romney.  This is the last week that Santorum will have a clear shot at trying to capture some momentum for himself.  After Thursday’s debate, there are none scheduled until February 22nd, and then none again until March.  Santorum’s shoestring campaign can’t buy enough media to make his case effectively against Gingrich and Romney, so he has to do what he did in the second South Carolina debate last week and hope it works better in Florida. He’s trailing at the 11% mark nationally and in Florida, and if Santorum can’t pull off a game-changer soon, he’s all but finished.

Ron Paul will be an afterthought in Florida, where he’s not competing actively, but not in tonight’s debate; NBC will make sure of that.  Paul will always be Paul, so discussing his strategy is moot to a certain extent, but it will be interesting to see whether he goes after Romney and/or Gingrich and to what extent.  If he attacks Romney to the exclusion of all others, Gingrich will send over a fruit basket later.  If he goes after both, he might end up helping Santorum, with whom he has tangled more often in previous debates.  If Paul goes after Santorum, it will prove he’s not terribly serious at all, but even that might help Santorum in Florida.


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OT:

John Kerry Breaks Nose Playing Hockey

And “two” black eyes. How does someone get 2 black eyes at once?

Great comments.

faraway on January 23, 2012 at 3:51 PM

I don’t believe it. I think he got in between Michelle and a tray of tamales.

/

Key West Reader on January 23, 2012 at 4:07 PM

Flora Duh on January 23, 2012 at 3:57 PM

Key West Reader on January 23, 2012 at 4:02 PM

Good ones! I propose a third, “Mittcake” (a la George Carlin’s bit on food.

/It looks like meatcake!

Christien on January 23, 2012 at 4:08 PM

John Kerry to hockey puck:

“Don’t you know who I am?”

Dack Thrombosis on January 23, 2012 at 4:06 PM

John Kerry is no Chuck Norris.

cozmo on January 23, 2012 at 4:09 PM

Willard is the absolute dregs. The guy is a hollow man programmed by MA RINO maker Eric Fehrnstrom. Tonight Newt will have him with a light aperitif……

wraithby on January 23, 2012 at 4:09 PM

What is Romney’s favorite kind of cake?

Christien on January 23, 2012 at 3:41 PM
Sponge, as in light airy and squishy.

Flora Duh on January 23, 2012 at 3:57 PM

I think it is those Fruit Cakes that used to get passed around at Christmas…repacked and given to someone the next year. Mitt’s – is at least 6 years old! It’s just now entering fermentation. He likes the fermented stuff, since he does not drink!

KOOLAID2 on January 23, 2012 at 4:10 PM

NewtNuts.
Your debater has no chance with obummer (either).
Fast forward example- Obie at the podium…huge cheering crowd… no TOTUS…. says to the adoring crowd- “Do you remember the last election when these Reepublican fools crowed 24/7 about “Obama-No executive experience! ” Remember Sarah Palin? (crowd boos) Remember Her ? No executive experience this and no experience that? Say what ?? ..Thats all they could say !!(crowd laughing at this point)”And now these same fools want to run a congressman- with ZERO executive experience- against my 3-1/2 yrs of Presidential experience ?? Are they stupid or somethin?…..or just being hypocritical?” You can’t believe what they are going to say… C’mon you have to give hopenchange more time”…. instead of going with the candidate who has ZERO executive experience – not even a Senator like I was “! Whats next ?? Are these Reepublicans gonna claim that they are the party of “Family Values” ?? “gimme a break” !!
The crowd roars, the media genuflects…. and the lights are slowly dimmed. ooof.

FlaMurph on January 23, 2012 at 4:10 PM

How many of you live in a really liberal state like I do? Our eastside is very conservative, but is the least populated. We conservatives only get our candidate elected on a local level, never on a state level. I know our state will not go for Gingrich . . . and probably not Romney. Paul would barely show anything.

You probably don’t know how frustrating it is for me to read that we might be nominating someone who has no chance to win in my state. It makes me almost want to just give up.

Voter from WA State on January 23, 2012 at 4:06 PM

Hey I’m from Minnesota – we didn’t even vote for Reagan.

I want the best candidate period. Minnesota is a goner anyway.

gophergirl on January 23, 2012 at 4:11 PM

John Kerry to hockey puck:

“Don’t you know who I am?”

Dack Thrombosis on January 23, 2012 at 4:06 PM
John Kerry is no Chuck Norris.

cozmo on January 23, 2012 at 4:09 PM

I think he was sailboarding…and a wave slapped him!

KOOLAID2 on January 23, 2012 at 4:13 PM

Enjoy it while you can Newt.That goes for all the others here who think that if you have another Candidate other than Newt you’re a “nutball.” real mature., and no I don’t like either of the front runners.Lets just grow up here and keep our eyes on the prize… Defeating Obama…

sandee on January 23, 2012 at 4:14 PM

While Independents, Blue dogs and Paul Supporters were hostile to Romney, they loathe Gingrich….and we need them to win.

Zybalto on January 23, 2012 at 3:52 PM

SC CNN exit poll

Independents- Gingrich 31%, Romney 25%

Moderate or Liberal- 31% Gingrich, 34% Romney

Flora Duh on January 23, 2012 at 4:14 PM

John Kerry Breaks Nose Playing Hockey

And “two” black eyes. How does someone get 2 black eyes at once?

Great comments.

faraway on January 23, 2012 at 3:51 PM

Actually, when I was a kid, I stumbled on a tree root as I was running across a park. I pitched head first right into a monkey bar post. I hit my forehead and had TWO blackeyes for 2 weeks. The purple marks extended half way down my cheeks and all the way up to my eyebrows. I am surprised no one called child services when they saw me, suspicious of potential child abuse. At least I didn’t break my nose, but my nose a miniscule compared to the size of Kerry’s nose.

FlaMurph on January 23, 2012 at 4:10 PM

Obama has a RECORD with that “experience”. A RECORD of abject FAILURE, he increased out debt level 40%, has NOT passed a budget (where is that “executive leadership”), and has lost millions of jobs AFTER his inauguration. And with his pitiful anti-oil, anti-natural gas policies, Americans are NOT going to be happy with $5/gallon pricing for gasoline this summer.

Obama is toast.

karenhasfreedom on January 23, 2012 at 4:16 PM

Newt is UNELECTABLE!!! OMG 11!!EVENTY ELVEN11!!

Romney continues to do well in Gallup’s polling in the “trial heat” head to head matchup against Obama, scoring a 48/50 against the incumbent. However, Gingrich picked up four points overnight in the same poll to get to the exact same 48/50 rating,

The sound you hear is someone’s meme shattering into a thousand pieces.

I will say it again, if Newt wins I fully expect all the moderates (Romney supporters) to get behind the republican candidate and vote for him, no more throwing hissy fits and losing elections becuase your choice failed to make the cut.

The conservative base has had the same words thrown in our faces enough times that it is about time the other groups live up to their words.

Skwor on January 23, 2012 at 4:16 PM

Christie = Romney. They stump together, Coulter loves that flavor of eastern RINO sandwich, and we in the cheap seats trust him only a little more than Mitt.

Lawdawg86 on January 23, 2012 at 3:49 PM

Christie is about to nominate a black gay judge for the NJ Supreme Court. This is a time when NJ is trying to fight the gay rights marriage issue. What better than to put one of “them” in the Big Top. Christie is showing himself to be more liberal than Romney.

timberline on January 23, 2012 at 4:19 PM

Romney has to be careful. It is clear that Newt is expert at political judo – turning the force of an opponents attacks against them.

Were I Newt and Mitt attacked me thus, I would simply respond that “the problems America faces are too big to waste time on this stage squabbling like school children and that I am disappointed Governor Romney has chosen to use his precious time in silly attacks. As for me, let’s discuss the issue Americans care about, jobs…”

mitchellvii on January 23, 2012 at 4:24 PM

timberline on January 23, 2012 at 4:19 PM

.
Have you heard Christie utter the words “Right Wing Social Engineering? Have you ? Do you know how far left you have to be to say that and attack the Rep party to score points with the lefties?
.
Tell me again about Newton Leroy’s true conservative values. i need a good laugh today. Stop with this BS. Newt is a progressive. You newtnuts spin better than team obama- the only difference is you don’t have the press in your corner.

FlaMurph on January 23, 2012 at 4:25 PM

If Romney comes across as childish and petulant while Gingrich come across as visionary and statesmanlike, Romney is finished. Newt can win the nomination tonight.

mitchellvii on January 23, 2012 at 4:27 PM

Down goes Romney! Down goes Romney!

/Howard Cosell

Christien on January 23, 2012 at 3:47 PM

My husband has been yelling this into the phone whenever he talks to our liberal republican friend (who used to live in Massachusetts). He also adds: “Third round T.K.O.”

Makes me laugh every time.

MississippiMom on January 23, 2012 at 4:27 PM

How many of you live in a really liberal state like I do? Our eastside is very conservative, but is the least populated. We conservatives only get our candidate elected on a local level, never on a state level. I know our state will not go for Gingrich . . . and probably not Romney. Paul would barely show anything.

You probably don’t know how frustrating it is for me to read that we might be nominating someone who has no chance to win in my state. It makes me almost want to just give up.

Voter from WA State on January 23, 2012 at 4:06 PM

How do you think we feel in Illinois? Chicago is the most corrupt democratic held political entity in the country. And where
Obama got his political start by having a judge leak
sealed divorce records that had sexual complaints from the ex wife
of his political opponent (ex wife is the blonde boss on “Burden of Proof”, Jerri Ryan). Jerri Ryan, in the divorce papers, claimed he wanted a threesome or something along those lines.
No proof, just accusations. Anyways it ended Ryan’s campaign.

You can expect huge “leaks” from the Obama camp no matter who
is the GOP nominee. It doesn’t matter if they are 100% clean
or not. Look what they did to Palin. It doesn’t matter. They
will pull their dirty tricks regardless.

We voters need to say -no more. I know all I need to know about
Newt and that is why I am supporting him. Any baloney they come
up with in this, the 11th hour, is just garbage. I am sticking
my fingers in my ears and yelling loudly, “I can’t hear you!”

Amjean on January 23, 2012 at 4:28 PM

Newt is peaking a week too soon

gerrym51 on January 23, 2012 at 4:28 PM

How many of you live in a really liberal state like I do? Our eastside is very conservative, but is the least populated. We conservatives only get our candidate elected on a local level, never on a state level. I know our state will not go for Gingrich . . . and probably not Romney. Paul would barely show anything.

You probably don’t know how frustrating it is for me to read that we might be nominating someone who has no chance to win in my state. It makes me almost want to just give up.

Voter from WA State on January 23, 2012 at 4:06 PM

I know exactly how frustrating it is. In Oregon, the whole state is Red, except for a thin red line running down the I-5 corridor.

portlandon on January 23, 2012 at 4:29 PM

If anybody has ever got punched in the nose and it is broke, you will get two black eyes. Not that in my younger days I let anyone get away with that, but it happens to other ppl.
heh

angrymike on January 23, 2012 at 4:29 PM

SC CNN exit poll

Independents- Gingrich 31%, Romney 25%

Moderate or Liberal- 31% Gingrich, 34% Romney

Flora Duh on January 23, 2012 at 4:14 PM

Will you stop with the anti-Mormon communist hate speech already?

angryed on January 23, 2012 at 4:29 PM

Great news..for barry. He’s now at 50% of registered voters. So he really doesn’t need the billion dollars..the Rs and Conservatives will destroy one another so that He and MIchelle can have a peaceful fall at home…and rest up, before the new wave of agitprop and Michelle’s trips abroad.

Soon enough the Rs will wright this off and try to get a Senate majority…that would be nice. They will have to distance themselves from the R candidate to to do.

I hope the Rs get 51 in the senate and keep the House. That’s all we can hope for at this point

r keller on January 23, 2012 at 4:31 PM

At tonight’s debate, Newt Gingrich is expected to come right out and tase moderator Brian Williams.

andy85719 on January 23, 2012 at 4:31 PM

Blue dogs … were hostile to Romney, they loathe Gingrich….and we need them to win.

Zybalto on January 23, 2012 at 3:52 PM

On behalf of Blue Dog Dems, I would like to say we loathe no one more hostilely than Obama.

Mutnodjmet on January 23, 2012 at 4:31 PM

BREAKING NEWS:

Mitt Romney vanishes without a trace.

Dack Thrombosis on January 23, 2012 at 4:04 PM

Is Joyce McKinney at it again?

MississippiMom on January 23, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Let us watch how Romney supporters start to say that all these people are stupid, ignorant, easily led morons, do not count, are faux conservatives, do not know what is best for them, have to be controlled for their own good.

Romney has no message about vote FOR me.
Romney only has a message of, attack attack attack, vote for me because I did not spend millions of dollars attacking myself!
Romney is wondering why this great plan is not working.

astonerii on January 23, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Voter from WA State on January 23, 2012 at 4:06 PM

WA is one of those pipe dreams of RINOs. If only we nominate a squishy RINO, he may have a chance in WA (and OR). McCain lost WA by 17%. Maybe if we nominate an even more liberal Republican we can cut than down to 14%!

angryed on January 23, 2012 at 4:32 PM

angryed on January 23, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Sadly, you are right. In 2000, it was so close in Oregon that we had to have a recount. (You can’t tell me voter fraud wasn’t involved.) However, it’s gone downhill from there, though after spending the decade with a heavily ‘Rat legislature, it’s evenly split now, and we hope to best that soon.

kakypat on January 23, 2012 at 4:37 PM

About that whole “Romney can beat Onama, but Gingrich will lose by 20 points things”….

Romney and Gingrich tied with Obama (down 5)

angryed on January 23, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Newt is a master debater and he is intellectually brilliant.

Newt’s grasp of issues dear to the heart of voters, and his ability to communicate them in a “take no prisoners” manner will continue his momentum.

It doesn’t matter what Newt’s baggage, he has the pulse of the voters. And, voters sense that only Newt has the killer instinct to kick Obama into the political wilderness.

Romney will be on the defensive, stammering, stuttering, fidgeting, lying, looking shifty, and generally continue his downward drift in the polls.

Romney is looking weak, desperate, petulant, and anemic. Poor thing!

Sparky5253 on January 23, 2012 at 4:59 PM

Let us watch how Romney supporters start to say that all these people are stupid, ignorant, easily led morons, do not count, are faux conservatives, do not know what is best for them, have to be controlled for their own good.

Start? START?

They’re well past starting and into meme territory with that.

Dack Thrombosis on January 23, 2012 at 5:00 PM

Burnt milk-toast! Drop out Mitt! And Santorum!

tinkerthinker on January 23, 2012 at 5:03 PM

At tonight’s debate, Newt Gingrich is expected to come right out and tase moderator Brian Williams.

andy85719 on January 23, 2012 at 4:31 PM

All he has to do is say his name,,,Briiiaaann,,, poof Brian is gone.

tinkerthinker on January 23, 2012 at 5:06 PM

Christie is about to nominate a black gay judge for the NJ Supreme Court. This is a time when NJ is trying to fight the gay rights marriage issue. What better than to put one of “them” in the Big Top. Christie is showing himself to be more liberal than Romney.

timberline on January 23, 2012 at 4:19 PM

So, picking a gay man to be a judge is something only a liberal would do?

McDuck on January 23, 2012 at 5:33 PM

Hello smoke filled rooms…it’s looking like convention brokerin’ time in Tampa!
Lots of stimulus $ for Little Havana cigar rollers.

Kenz on January 23, 2012 at 5:50 PM

Obama’s concern trolls are stumping hard for Baggage-On-Board Newt, the one candidate who Barry could beat without breaking a sweat, -because of Gingrich’s permanent stain of negatives with the majority that will not shift, no matter how many times this multi-millionaire pretends to be the “non-elite” and this lifelong Washington insider poses as the “Washington outsider”.

Newt is the most shameless flapdoodle seller since Clinton.

Like a pickpocket pretending to be an off duty cop who will help find the culprit as a gambit to help him get away scot free.

So far it’s working amazing well with those who hate Obama and the MSM so blindingly that they can’t see that the good ship Newt has a hull of swiss cheese.

profitsbeard on January 23, 2012 at 6:38 PM

So, picking a gay man to be a judge is something only a liberal would do?

McDuck on January 23, 2012 at 5:33 PM

I would argue, yes!

astonerii on January 23, 2012 at 6:39 PM

Christie is about to nominate a black gay judge for the NJ Supreme Court. This is a time when NJ is trying to fight the gay rights marriage issue. What better than to put one of “them” in the Big Top. Christie is showing himself to be more liberal than Romney.

timberline on January 23, 2012 at 4:19 PM

Why the hell do you care if the guy is black, gay, or whatever? And how is it “liberal” to choose such a person for the state Supreme Court? Crikey.

changer1701 on January 23, 2012 at 6:45 PM

If Romney wants to take an effective line of attack tonight, he should concentrate entirely on Gingrich’s fall from grace with Republicans the last time he was trusted with a national leadership position and contrast that with his own successful executive experience.

I don’t know… possibly a substansive negative risk for the Romney campaign in this line of attack, IMHO.

Gingrich could use it as an opportunity to paint himself as the ultimate outsider… someone who went to D.C. to continue the Reagan Revolution but, after balancing the budget for four years, welfare reform, yada yada yada… and (pay attention – this is the really important part) ruffling the wrong GOP elite and Big Media feathers, was ‘Palinized‘ via trumped up ethics charges and publicly scourged; but ultimately the charges were found to be baseless and Gingrich was exonerated. The perfect fairytale happy ending for our little tale of intrigue and woe.

See how that works… some verbal judo and, viola, Bad Newt is dead and reborn as ‘St. Newt’ – Hero of the downtrodden Conservatives and Teapartiers.

If it were any other pol, I’d say they couldn’t pull it off. But this ain’t any other pol… it’s Gingrich. And like him or not, you’ve got to admit that he has a talent for just exactly this kind of oratory feat.

I’m not saying it will happen that way. I’m just saying that it is easy to see it happening that way.

Snorkdoodle Whizbang on January 23, 2012 at 7:07 PM

One thing is certain . . . Romney is a wimp in mold of McCain and he will be crushed by Obama’s ruthless machine. It’s hard to tell if Newt can win but he’ll match Obama blow for blow.

rplat on January 23, 2012 at 7:33 PM

profitsbeard on January 23, 2012 at 6:38 PM

Despite the fact that I do like him as a political commentator (not for his legislative fall from grace), I couldn’t agree with you more.

Slainte on January 23, 2012 at 7:44 PM

Christie is about to nominate a black gay judge for the NJ Supreme Court. This is a time when NJ is trying to fight the gay rights marriage issue. What better than to put one of “them” in the Big Top. Christie is showing himself to be more liberal than Romney.

timberline on January 23, 2012 at 4:19 PM

Is this judge a leftist who supports the radical homosexual agenda? If so it’s very relevant. If he’s in favor of true marriage between a man and a woman and opposes homosexual social(ist) engineering than good luck to him.

wraithby on January 23, 2012 at 8:16 PM

… I submit that it’s painfully obvious that “all the GOP candidates suck.”

Further, Obama clearly needs to go.

That said, I absolutely detest Romney, and also how “it’s his turn”, etc… how the lamestream media and PTB have decided “we” “must” accept him.

I DON’T THINK SO.

Baggage and all, Gingrich is the best alternative, and contrasts BHO far more than Mittens.

So he get’s my vote. It’s that simple.

Of course, I think he’ll tear BHO to shreds in any debate, and he has “whatever it is” to actually identify and take issue with “the real issues.” And this, too, is part of the equation…

GuitarMark on January 23, 2012 at 9:24 PM

Gallup, great, another stinking left-wing outfit and they have Willard up by a point? Yeah, right, it means in reality Mittens is getting his butt handed to him!

insidiator on January 24, 2012 at 7:56 AM

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