New Rasmussen Poll on Presidential Race

As America heads toward “Super Tuesday” on March 6th in which primaries or caucuses will be held in ten states, the Christian Science Monitor reports in “Ron Paul poll shocker: He beats Obama head-to-head” that the influential Rasmussen Poll has released its latest findings of the views of likely voters in which the four Republican Party candidates are matched up head-to-head against Barack Obama:

How about this for a poll shocker: While everybody in US politics has been preoccupied with the Michigan primary, Ron Paul has sneaked up on President Obama and for the first time leads the incumbent in a head-to-head survey.

That’s right, leads—as in, ahead of, out front, winning, and so forth. According to a Rasmussen Reports poll released Tuesday, at the moment Representative Paul bests Mr. Obama in a head-to-head matchup by 43 to 41 percent.

The same poll has Mitt Romney tied with Obama, at 44 percent each. Rick Santorum is three points behind the president, according to Rasmussen, and Newt Gingrich is 10 points behind.

Meanwhile and as also reported in the Monitor,

In the RealClearPolitics poll average of the four GOP contenders, Paul remains in fourth, as the choice of 12 percent of Republican voters. He’s not outperforming that figure in any big March 6 Super Tuesday states, either. In Ohio, he’s at 10.7 percent. In Georgia, he’s at 8.8 percent. He’s doing a bit better in Tennessee, at 15 percent in a recent Vanderbilt University poll, but that’s still good for only third place.

The key here is that while Paul and his constitutional, anti-war, anti-Fed, free-market, small-government message does less well among conservative Republicans, as Forbes reported in January, he does extremely well among independents, especially young people, as well as civil-libertarian and anti-war Democrats, and in a head-to-head contest against Obama this could make the difference. In addition and as more and more conservative Republicans are exposed to news accounts of Santorum’s Big-Government record (see here, here, here, here, here, and here), Paul’s chances may decidedly improve among conservative voters.

David J. Theroux (1949–2022) was Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Independent Institute.
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