Newt Gingrich has been one of the few big name Republicans to make it clear he is seeking the Republican nomination, but with Newt’s poor poll numbers in spite of already high name recognition, Tom Jensen at PPP just doesn’t see a path for Gingrich to win the nomination:
Here’s the problem for Gingrich with that path to the nomination though: Palin and Huckabee voters really don’t like him all that much more than they like Romney. With Republicans who currently list Huckabee as their top choice for the nomination Gingrich’s favorability is a 58/24 spread and Romney’s is actually better at 59/19. With Republicans who say Palin’s their top choice right now Gingrich’s numbers are slightly better than Romney’s, but just by a small margin- 53/29 for the former Speaker as opposed to 50/29 for the former Governor.
Gingrich really can’t expect to get much of a bounce even if Palin and Huckabee don’t end up running. And that probably means someone(s) from further back in the field who have a lot more room to grow as they become better known will become the conservative purist alternatives to Romney. Our numbers just don’t suggest much of a path for Gingrich.
It doesn’t look great for Gingrich, but, with a crowded field, it is possible he could get lucky by having the other candidates split the vote just right, allowing him to string together a series of victories with just small pluralities, similar to how John McCain managed to win in 2008.
In 2008, McCain won the early states of New Hampshire, South Carolina and Florida, but got less than 38 percent of the vote in each.