Sunday, December 4, 2011

Iowa Polls Show Ron Paul Well Positioned To Win Iowa Caucus

Two Iowa polls, conducted by the Iowa Des Moines Register and NBC News, showed some interesting results.

Iowa (Des Moines Register)
Congressman Ron Paul (R-Texas)
Gingrich 25
Paul 18
Romney 16

Iowa (NBC News)
Gingrich 24
Romney 17
Paul 16

What is interesting is that the top three Republican candidates are not candidates who put social conservative issues first.   Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, who did lead with social conservative issues and had a strong evangelistic support, won the Iowa caucus in 2008.

Of course, Romney's key argument is that he is the most electable.  The NBC Iowa poll disputes that, saying of the top three in Iowa, Ron Paul would match up best against President Obama in the general election.

Obama 47, Gingrich 37
Obama 46, Romney 39
Paul 42, Obama 42 (tie)

If I were to bet on a winner of the Iowa caucus right now, I would bet on Ron Paul.  Gingrich's biggest problem is he has virtually no organization and you need an organization to win a caucus.  While Romney has the organization he is not seen as an authentic conservative which is important to Iowa Republican activists.  I wouldn't be surprised if Romney fails to match his total of 25% he received in the Iowa caucus in 2008.

While I agree that Ron Paul's foreign policy views can be extreme and not realistic, on the other hand I think the rest of the field is misjudging how isolationist the Republican electorate has become.  Republicans, indeed hardcore conservatives, are tired of all the foreign commitments we have and want to draw back from our long-standing role as the world's policeman.

Rick Santorum is likely to pick up some if not a substantial portion of the Herman Cain supporters.  He may be able to use the momentum from that to propel himself to a better than expected showing in the Iowa caucus.  I wouldn't even rule out a Rick Perry resurrection, who on paper I believe would be the best candidate because he hits all the GOP constituencies.  Of course elections are not conducted on paper and Perry's performance on the stump has been nothing short of disastrous.

Still on this day, a month out, I'd bet on Ron Paul to win the Iowa caucus.


Nicolas Martin said...

I think it not quite true that Ron Paul doesn't "put social conservatives first"? His domestic policies, with a couple of exceptions, are in tune with the Christian Right. Paul's bigger problem is that the Right is wedded to apocalyptic loyalty to Israel and military interventionism.

Paul K. Ogden said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Paul K. Ogden said...


I meant Paul puts economic issues ahead of social issues. That might be a better way to phrase it.

I strongly disagree that Republicans are committed to military interventionism. There is a sizable portion of the GOP electorate that is isolationist-leaning, and that portion is growing bigger every day. The candidates are just behind the curve on the issue.

M Theory said...

Why is it unrealistic for America to not be constantly engaged in war?

Nicolas Martin said...

It must be that all those non-interventionist Republicans get amnesia on election day and vote for warmongers; or maybe it is just a tic.

There have been many opinion surveys of support for the Iraq war. In August CBS asked:

"Looking back, do you think the United States did the right thing in taking military action against Iraq, or should the U.S. have stayed out?"

Stayed Out:
Republicans: 33%
Democrats: 75%
Independents: 63%

Paul K. Ogden said...


33% of the GOP electorate saying we should have stayed out of Iraq is a signficant number.

The fact is very people vote on foreign policy. Unless it's a major war going on, foreign policy is off their radar when they vote..

Cato said...

Will Ron finally get more than 89 seconds in a 90-minute debate?

As I've said, the Republicans need to nominate Ron, or I and others will vote for Obama as punishment.

For the first time, the Republicans have a candidate who actually argues for all those issues to which the Republicans usually only pay lip service. Ron Paul is the Republicans' chance to put up or shut up.

The the GOP fails to nominate Ron, we'll know that the Republicans are just a bunch of lying hypocrites who will say whatever is necessary to get votes, but ultimately believe very little about what they tell the public.

M Theory said...

Cato, I think Obama is better than the any of the GOP candidates except Ron Paul.

Newt is beyond scary.

If the R's don't nominate RP, then it is possible he will run as an Independent. And if that happens, he will split the vote and we'll get Obama anyway.

Nicolas Martin said...

It is supposed to be to the credit of Republicans than after trillions of dollars wasted and hundreds of thousands of lives lost, a third of them think it was a mistake? I'm not impressed.

All but two Republican senators, including Lugar and Coats, just voted to allow the military to indefinitely detain Americans without trial. As former Reagan official Paul Craig Roberts says, the Republican party is new a Gestapo party. Roberts is only mistaken to the extent that the plundering the constitution is bipartisan, but that hardly excuses the Republicans.