Three weeks ago, Rasmussen’s poll of likely voters showed Speaker Newt Gingrich trailing President Barack Obama by a whopping 27 percentage points (51 to 24 percent) among independent voters. Now, Rasmussen shows, Obama’s lead over Gingrich has shrunk to just 6 points (41 to 35 percent) among independents. Obama also leads Gingrich by 6 points (44 to 38 percent) among all likely voters.
Gingrich, who just a short while ago was languishing in the back of the pack in the GOP race, has been the field’s biggest mover of late. Shortly after Rick Perry entered the race two and a half months ago, Gingrich had only 5 percent support in Rasmussen, 4 percent support in Gallup, and 3 percent support in Fox News polling. Now, after a series of fine debate performances, his support has risen to 12 percent in Gallup and Fox News and 14 percent in Rasmussen, and he’s now in 3rd place in each poll — as well as in the Real Clear Politics average of recent polling.
Rasmussen’s newfound evidence that Gingrich could well be able to compete against Obama will likely further boost the former speaker’s support among a GOP electorate that’s hungry for someone who can persuasively articulate conservative principles while winning the presidency.