Remember all the way back to a little more than a week ago when Rick Perry was little more than an unofficial write-in candidate and Michele Bachmann reigned supreme as the uncontested queen of Iowa conservatives?
Me neither. A week ago? Bah! I'm sorry, grandpa, but you and the ancient Mesopotamians can fight over that. Now, I'm all about what's happening in Iowa today! And today, there's a new high priest in town…
The race is pretty close four ways in Iowa but Rick Perry is the new favorite among Republican voters in the state. Among announced candidates he's at 22% to 19% for Mitt Romney, 18% for Michele Bachmann, and 16% for Ron Paul. Further back are Herman Cain at 7%, Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum at 5%, and Jon Huntsman at 3%…
Only 33% of Republican voters in Iowa identify themselves as members of the Tea Party but a broad advantage with them is driving Perry's lead. He gets 32% to 22% for Bachmann, and 19% for Paul. Romney is all the way back in 6th place with those voters at only 6%. Romney doesn't need to win Tea Party voters to win in Iowa but he needs to do a whole lot better than that. With the majority of Republicans who don't consider themselves Tea Partiers Romney actually leads Perry and Bachmann with 30% to their 16% but it's not enough to make up for his poor performance with the far right faction of the party.
So, that's that. Michele Bachmann and Mitt Romney are out and Rick Perry is in. All we have to do is make these next five months hurry up and get over with, and Rick Perry is as good as the winner of the Iowa caucuses.
And then we just need to make the Iowa caucuses mean as much as everybody in the media likes to pretend they do, and he's the nominee.
What could possibly go wrong?
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Tags: Iowa, Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Polls, Rick Perry, Ron Paul, Tea Party