Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Gingrich Drawing Large Crowds In Florida, Romney And Santorum...Not So Much

It looks like Newt is winning the enthusiasm battle in Florida so far. Fortunately for Romney, he has six days to reverse the tide. Is that enough time?
If former Florida frontrunner Mitt Romney hoped Newt Gingrich's rise in popularity was a temporary blip, Gingrich's campaign appeared to prove otherwise Tuesday as it drew crowds estimated at 4,000 in Sarasota and 6,000 in Naples.

The size of the early afternoon rally at a hangar at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport surprised even Gingrich. "When they told me how big the crowd was, I was stunned," he said.

Then came the rock star treatment at an evening event at Cambier Park in Historic Old Naples, where the throng screamed with excitement as he spoke from under a bandshell with the American flag behind him and converged on him when he was finished, forcing him to squeeze his way back to his bus.


Romney, meanwhile, slammed the former U.S. Speaker of the House during one of his two appearances Tuesday -- to a crowd of about 250 people in front of a foreclosed home in Lehigh Acres.


Rick Santorum, the third candidate actively campaigning in the state, made stops in Okeechobee, Stuart and Punta Gorda, where he attracted crowds of 200 to 400 people. The fourth candidate, Ron Paul, has no events scheduled in Florida other than a CNN debate Thursday in Jacksonville.

Santorum frequently blamed his smaller crowds and low poll numbers on a media that he said was trying to make the Florida primary a two man race between Gingrich and Romney.

"The national media have propped up, as they have in the past, with two candidates for your choosing," he said at a tea party rally in Stuart that drew more than 200 people. "It's always two candidates they feel comfortable promoting. When you're here in Florida, you speak loudly in election time."

Read the article


Lionhead said...

This is demonstrating the effect of Newt as described in the LA Times article I posted yesterday. Voters connect with Newt, more so, than Mitt.


"He's managed to transform into a spokesman for all of the rank and file's frustrations, insecurities and grievances as well as their hopes and ideals.

He never could have pulled it off were it not for Romney's shortcomings."


"For whatever reason, Romney seems like a creature put on Earth to blend in with the humans and report back what he finds. He clearly likes earthlings, and they in turn find him pleasant enough, and surprisingly lifelike. Occasionally he finds the right words, but he rarely connects them to the right tone. This dearth of convincing passion in the front-runner makes the passionate base of the party want to look elsewhere — even to Newtzilla."

More proof of the pudding from the Quinnipiac University Poll released today:

"Gingrich gets 37 percent of men to 33 percent for Romney, while Romney is ahead 38 - 31 among women. Gingrich leads among white evangelical Christians 43 - 30 percent and among those who consider themselves to be tea party supporters 43 - 28 percent. Each makes up roughly a third of primary voters although there is substantial overlap among those two groups.

Romney is viewed more favorably, 71 - 19 percent, than is Gingrich, at 61 - 26 percent. Here again, Gingrich does better among voters polled after the South Carolina victory. Santorum gets a 58 - 13 percent favorability rating, while Paul gets a negative 36 - 40 percent score."

"No matter which candidate is ahead, the race for the Sunshine State's delegates remains wide open. Although only 7 percent of likely voters are undecided, 38 percent say they might change their mind. There is little difference among Gingrich and Romney supporters in terms of thinking they might change their mind."

The electability arguement of Mitt supporters is on tenuous ground. In order to be elected, one must have the greatest appeal to all voters. Not just their partisans.

"Romney's challenge is greater than he realizes. Long unable to connect with voters on his terms and his timetable, he must now try with time running out, and without seeming desperate."

It appears Mitt will go scorched earth on Newtzilla, but he best be careful of an 'atomic blowback' by Newt. ;)

Anonymous said...

You think they would get these crowd numbers accurate. Carl Cameron reported on the Newt event in Sarasota and said 1000 people attended. He didnt mention anywhere near 4000.

ClearHeadedConservative said...

CNN/Time/ORC Florida poll: Romney 36, Gingrich 34, Santorum 11, Paul 9

Terrye said...

RWN, I think you are wrong here.

Doug NYC GOP said...


I'll raise your assessment and utilizing his track record, state unwaveringly....

RWN is most definately wrong here.

Which is why he hasn't addessed your charge in over 3 hours.