In case your devotion to your political addiction does not extend to a celebratory event like New Year’s weekend, what follows is a quick recap of the two major polls that came out of the Hawkeye State, with the clock now ticking down to mere hours before the Iowa caucuses begin on Tuesday evening. That pollsters were in the field during the holiday weekend (PPP polled New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day) says a lot about the demand for information about the state of play in Iowa.
On Saturday night, the much-anticipated Selzer/Des Moines Register poll of Iowa caucus-goers was released. The poll, which was one of the few to hit the fairway in the tumultuous caucuses four years ago, gave Mitt Romney a narrow lead (24 percent) over Ron Paul (22 percent).
Despite being in third place (15 percent), the big story of the Selzer/DMR poll was former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum. Santorum, according to the pollster, was a close second to Romney over the final two days of polling. This seemed to confirm the “Santorum surge” meme that had become conventional wisdom over the past week or so.
Whatever doubt there was in the “Santorum Surge” was eliminated by the final edition of the weekly tracking poll by our polling pals at PPP:
Ron Paul: 20
Mitt Romney: 19
Rick Santorum: 18
Newt Gingrich: 14
Rick Perry: 10
Michele Bachmann: 8
Jon Huntsman: 4
Buddy Roemer: 2
In the greatest tongue-in-cheek admission for a pollster this year, PPP’s Tom Jensentweeted the following invitation:
If you want to take a deep dive here are 340 pgs of crosstabs. If you find out who’s going to win in there let me know: LINK
While those volumes and volumes of data don’t tell us who is going to win tomorrow night, they do, at a minimum, tell us how the three current frontrunners will attain the victory.
Find out how below the fold…..
come from behind victory?
Paul: 20 (24)
Romney: 19 (20)
Santorum: 18 (10)
Gingrich: 14 (13)
Perry: 10 (10)
Bachmann: 8 (11)
Huntsman: 4 (4)
Roemer: 2 (2)
Other: 4 (5)
The good news for Rick Santorum is that he’s surging. The very good news for Rick Santorum is that he’s dominating late deciders—29 percent of those who have decided in last week are going for him, compared to 17 percent for Mitt Romney and 13 percent for Ron Paul. And the excellent news is that one in four voters still say they are open to changing their mind: always good news for a candidate who is surging but has not yet obtained the lead.
Santorum is leading with the usual suspects: he leads among tea party Republicans and conservatives. Apparently Mitt Romney’s say-anything campaign isn’t all that appealing to them and they dislike Ron Paul’s refusal to go to war with Iran because it wants a nuke.
It’s anybody’s guess who will win Iowa, but it certainly looks like Santorum, Romney, and Paul are the only three candidates seriously in the running. And while Romney may yet still win, he has to be worried about his nightmare scenario: coming in third place in a race he was supposed to win—and the emergence of a single Not Romney who has done more than lead a poll, but has actually won an election.:
This is also very good for Santorum:
Santorum is 2nd choice of Bachmann, Newt, and Perry’s voters. Interesting to see how much ship jumping there is in last 2 days
I’ll bet a lot.