Billionaire developer Donald Trump is showing signs of a surge in polls tracking GOP frontrunners for the 2012 presidential nomination, according to The Wall Street Journal.
In a new Wall Street Journal/NBC poll, Trump was tied for second with former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, with 17 percent behind former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who had 21 percent.
House Speaker Newt Gingrich got 11 percent, just ahead of former Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin’s 10 percent. Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, considered a strong contender by political handicappers, remains largely unknown, with just 6 percent support. Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota had 5%, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum 3 percent, and Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour with just 1 percent.
Trump “makes a lot of sense to the average guy out there,” Todd Mauney, a conservative Republican in Weatherford, Texas, told the Journal. “... He can be serious when it’s time to make real decisions.“
If you remove Trump, but include Gingrich, Pawlenty and Barbour and Bachmann, Romney comes out with a comfortable 20-point lead, 40 percent to Gingrich’s second-place 20 percent. Pawlenty had 12 percent and Ms. Bachmann 11 percent.
Barbour, a former Republican National Committee chief and chairman of the Republican Governors Association, has a powerful fund-raising network and a vast Rolodex of contacts, but he has yet to catch on with primary voers. He garnered 3 percent of the support of those polled.
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