Cain takes the lead in GOP race – poll

October 26, 2011

Businessman Herman Cain has pulled ahead of Mitt Romney and now leads the field of 2012 Republican candidates, according to a new New York Times/ CBS News poll.

Cain has 25 percent support among Republican primary voters,  compared with 21 percent support for the former Massachusetts governor.

The two candidates were tied at 17 percent in the previous NYT/CBS poll released on Oct. 3.

The new poll shows  Cain’s support among Tea Party conservatives climbed to 32 percent in mid-October — up  from 18 percent just a few weeks earlier.

Cain’s rise to the top of the polls  is powered by a non-traditional campaign (here’s the “smoking” Cain ad everyone’s talking about). But  he’s going to have to do more than that to do well in the early nominating contests in January, Reuters’ Patricia Zengerle reports.

Rick Perry, who  formally announced his 20 percent flat tax plan on Tuesday, has dropped to fifth place among the eight declared Republican White House hopefuls, according to the poll.

The Texas governor has taken a steep slide to 6 percent support — down  from 23 percent (and front-runner status) in mid-September.

Here are the poll numbers for the remainder of the GOP field:

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich – 10 percent;

Texas Representative Ron Paul – 8 percent;

Minnesota Representative Michele Bachmann – 2 percent

Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum – 1 percent

Former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman – 1 percent

Fourteen percent of those surveyed said they were undecided or did not know who they would pick to be the GOP presidential nominee.


Photo Credits: REUTERS/Las Vegas Sun/Steve Marcus (Cain at Las Vegas conference); REUTERS/Brian C. Frank (Magazine cover signed by Cain at at Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines)


We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see

It’s time for Bachmann and Santorum to stuff their egos, get off the stage, and endorse Cain.

Posted by gorgo | Report as abusive

He’s beginning to look like the “None of the above” line on the ballot.

Posted by johnjcpa | Report as abusive

Wow. This just proves once and for all how completely brain dead Republicans are. Cain’s 9-9-9 plan has been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt by every single economist who has analyzed it to be a huge tax cut for the rich and a huge tax increase on the working poor, yet he has the most support of any of their candidates. The ignorance is incredible. All you middle class Republicans who are so eager to give more of your hard earned money away so you can make some CEO even richer should just send me a check instead. I promise I’ll create just as many jobs with it as the Bush tax cuts did.

Posted by 4ngry4merican | Report as abusive

After the primaries determine who the front runners end up to be and after the convention chooses a nominee from among the candidates we need to stand united in support of the nominee and elect that nominee President whomever it is even if it wasn’t your first choice in the primaries.

What is important to the survival of this Republic as we have known it before obama began his Socialist/Marxist agenda is the elimination of obama as president by us the voters on November 06, 2012.

Posted by DelRioRoy | Report as abusive

“Redistribution of Wealth” is MARXISM, COMMUNISM, and OBAMAISM.

Posted by DelRioRoy | Report as abusive

As a conservative I can not responsibly consider voting for anyone of the Republican candidates this year. Go ahead and hit me with vitriolic responses but at the same time ask yourself the following question: Is this the best that we could do as Republicans. What an embarrassment to our cause.

Posted by markafrancis1 | Report as abusive

@4angry4merican: 9-9-9-tax-Laffer/2011/10/19/id/415005

Oops! A well-respected economist who says that his plan would create jobs!

“Laffer writes: “The whole purpose of a flat tax, à la 9-9-9, is to lower marginal tax rates and simplify the tax code. With lower marginal tax rates . . . both the demand for and the supply of labor and capital will increase. Output will soar, as will jobs.”

So much for your lie of “Every single economist”
You know who Art Laffer is, don’t you? He was on Regan’s economic policy advisory board from 81-88. He also coined the Laffer Curve.

Fail on your part

Posted by Robb969 | Report as abusive

I want to get the 47% who don’t pay taxes paying taxes. I want everyone with skin in the game. I want everyone to get up in arms every single time some idiot tries to raise taxes. Most people “know” corporations don’t pay enough in taxes, well most people are right. Corporations don’t pay anything in taxes, since corporations don’t actually keep any money. They pass it on to people, corporations aren’t real. So the people who control the corporations pass those higher costs/taxes in one of three ways, onto consumers (that is you), onto shareholders (that is your mother/father/grandparents pension), or take a pay cut. Hmm which are you going to do? That’s right pass that foolishness onto the idiots who thought you paid those taxes in the first place. Stop and think. Just because some college professor says this is how it works doesn’t make him right.

Posted by Suncatcher | Report as abusive

Herman Cain is doing so well because he is NAMING Obama as the problem, and laying the blame for the current condition of this country squarely on Obama’s doorstep, while the establishment complicit repubs bash their own potential candidates with a fervor they have NEVER EVER applied to Obama.
The repub’s annointed man, Romney, will never see my vote, nor will my vote go to any person they attempt to force down the throats of the American voter in an effort to maintain their Republican establishment complicit status quo.

Posted by jinky | Report as abusive

I like the Hermanator, I like that he’s a self made man, a smart man, a problem solver, a gifted speaker. I like that he speaks directly and with truth. I like it that he’s not a career politician and that he’s beholden to no one. Herman Cain doesn’t just speak about the American Dream, he _is_ the American Dream.

I am also truly enjoying how he twists the panties of the Establishment, left and right, and how they now, twitterpated and confused, grab at any any straw to discredit him.

Mr. Cain resonates with a huge class of moderate Americans who are infinitely tired of business as usual in Foggy Bottom. We may not be the noisiest chicks in the nest, but by God we vote.

Honkies For Herman 2012

Posted by CaptnCrunch | Report as abusive

CaptnCrunch, Foggy Bottom? I don’t think 2 percent of Americans know anything about “business as usual” in the State Department.

Posted by Ninguna | Report as abusive