Cain takes the lead in GOP race – poll
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)