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article imageIn open Republican field, Ron Paul ranked best against Obama

By Michael Krebs     May 6, 2011 in Politics
A new CNN / Opinion Research Corporation poll released on Thursday showed a flat Republican presidential candidate field, with Congressman Ron Paul predicted to fare best against President Obama.
The latest CNN / Opinion Research Corporation poll released on Thursday demonstrated a Republican presidential candidate field that is without a clearly discernible leader.
None of the candidates or potential candidates scored above 20 percent, CNN reported.
"No GOP candidate has a statistically significant lead, so it's way too soon to start talking about front-runners," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland told CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser.
The poll was released ahead of the Thursday's South Carolina debate, where the presidential candidates discussed their varied positions for 90 minutes in a forum that helped underscore the findings of the CNN / Opinion Research Corporation poll, the Philadelphia Inquirer reported.
The South Carolina debate was composed of five presidential candidates: Senator Rick Santorum, former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, pizza chief Herman Cain, Congressman Ron Paul, and former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson.
Congressman Ron Paul receives support from independents and from Tea Party activists, and the CNN / Opinion Research Corporation poll found that Mr. Paul would perform best against President Obama if the election were held today. Paul trails President Obama by just 7 points, 52 percent for Obama and 45 percent for Paul. Comparatively, Huckabee trails Obama by 8 points, Romney by 11 points, Gingrich by 17, Palin by 19, and Trump by 22 points.
"It should be obvious to any political observer that hypothetical general election match-ups at this stage of the game have relatively little predictive value," CNN Polling Director Keating Holland said, according to the CNN report. "GOP primary match-ups are another matter - since the modern era of presidential primaries began in 1972, there have been six times when the GOP nomination was up for grabs. In five of those six election cycles, the eventual GOP winner was leading the polls taken in April of the previous year. That may mean little in 2011 since no Republican hopeful has a commanding lead, but it also means that the history books won't let us completely dismiss these polls."
More about Republicans, 2012 elections, Ron paul, Presidential candidates, White house
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