CBS NEWS POLLFor release: Tuesday, December 20, 20116:30 PM (EST)Gingrich and Romney: Tied on the Economy & Tied for the Nomination
December 14-18, 2011
Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich are now tied for the Republican nomination, with RonPaul coming in third. Romney and Gingrich receive support from different voter groups:Romney from moderates and non-Tea Party supporters, Gingrich from conservatives.
Romney’s strengths include having the best chance to beat Barack Obama and havingthe right temperament for president. Many Republican primary voters (most of whom areconservative) see him as a moderate. He falls below Gingrich and Paul on fighting hardfor his economic policies.
Gingrich is viewed as a conservative, and best prepared for the presidency. He and RonPaul are seen as the candidates who would represent the biggest change from BarackObama.
Like Americans overall, Republican primary voters think the nation’s most importantissue is the economy and jobs, and they are more likely to think the economy is very bad(52%) and getting worse (38%). Gingrich and Romney are tied as the candidate mosttrusted to handle the economy and unemployment.
The State of the Race
Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney lead the field of Republican candidates nationally, each with20%. Ron Paul takes the third spot at 10%, while the remaining candidates are in single digits.Last month, Herman Cain was the top choice of Republican primary voters, but Gingrich andRomney now lead after Cain’s exit from the race.
2012 Republican Nomination for President
(among Republican primary voters)Now 11/11 10/25 10/3 9/16Newt Gingrich 20% 15% 10% 8% 7%Mitt Romney 20 15 21 17 16Ron Paul 10 5 8 7 5Rick Perry 6 8 6 12 23Michele Bachmann 4 4 2 4 7Rick Santorum 3 2 1 3 1Jon Huntsman 1 1 1 2 1Herman Cain na 18 25 17 5Someone else 19 14 12 10 11Undecided/Don’t know 17 17 14 18 22