The results of yesterday’s WMUR, ABC News, NH GOP 2012 Straw Poll basically confirm what we already know: Mitt Romney is looking strong as the early stages of the 2012 presidential primary get underway in New Hampshire. Only 273 of the 500 Republicans who were eligible cast ballots at Saturday’s New Hampshire Republican Party 2011 Annual Meeting in Derry participated in the nonscientific poll.
Mitt Romney 35% = 95 votes
Ron Paul 11% = 30 votes
Tim Pawlenty 8% = 21 votes
Sarah Palin 7% = 19 votes
Michelle Bachmann, Jim Demint 5% = 13 votes each
Herman Cain 4% = 10 votes
Chris Christie, Rick Santorum, Mitch Daniels, Newt Gingrich 3% = 8 votes each
Mike Huckabee, Mike Pence, Rudy Giuliani, Judd Gregg, Gary Johnson 2% = 5 votes each
Donald Trump, Haley Barbour 1% = 2 votes each
*Note = vote count is estimated based upon percentage of vote each candidate received
Mitt Romney also dominated his potential opponents for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination in the five scientific surveys of New Hampshire voters that have been conducted since April of 2010. Much will probably be made of Ron Paul’s second place finish in the straw poll, but only 9 votes separated him from Tim Pawlenty, who took third place. Two previous polls found only 6-7 percent of Granite State voters saying that they'd support Paul in 2012. That’s consistent with the results of the 2008 New Hampshire Primary, when he received 8 percent of the vote.