The latest Fox News poll, conducted earlier this week, shows that support for Herman Cain and Newt Gingrich has quadrupled over the past two months, while support for every other Republican presidential candidate except for Ron Paul has declined. Since late August, when Fox conducted its first poll following Rick Perry’s entrance into the race, support for Cain among Republican primary voters is up 18 points (from 6 to 24 percent), and support for Gingrich is up 9 points (from 3 to 12 percent). Meanwhile, Perry’s support is down 19 points (from 29 to 10 percent), Michele Bachmann’s is down 5 points (from 8 to 3 percent), Mitt Romney’s is down 2 points (from 22 to 20 percent), Rick Santorum’s is down 1 point (from 4 to 3 percent), and Jon Huntsman’s is also down 1 point (from 1 to 0 percent). Ron Paul’s is up 1 point (from 8 to 9 percent).
All in all, Cain leads (with 24 percent support), with Romney in second (at 20 percent), and Gingrich in third (at 12 percent). Perry (at 10 percent) edges Paul (at 9 percent) for fourth.
The poll also shows net favorability ratings among independents, but only for Cain, Romney, and Perry. Cain’s net favorability rating among independents is +4 points (34 percent favorable to 30 percent unfavorable), Romney’s is minus-3 points (35 percent favorable to 38 percent unfavorable), and Perry’s is a sobering minus-35 points (18 percent favorable to 53 percent unfavorable) — a ratio of about 1 favorable to 3 unfavorable among those independents who registered an opinion.
Cain and Gingrich are scheduled to participate in a modified Lincoln-Douglas-style debate on November 5th, starting an hour before the LSU-Alabama kickoff. Remember to set your DVRs to record the second half of the debate.