The governor of Wisconsin is the clear choice for president of New Hampshire Republicans and former first lady Hillary R. Clinton leads other Granite State’s 2016 first-in-the-nation primary, according to the Feb. 2-3 Howie Carr/Gravis poll of 608 Republicans and 384 Democrats. The Margin of error 4% for republicans, Dems 5%.
“The poll ran right after Mitt Romney got out of the race, so what we are seeing it the move of Romney’s support to Gov. Scott K. Walker, who was the choice of 23 percent,” said Doug Kaplan, managing partner at Gravis Insights, the Florida-based company that conducted the poll.
It was expected that Romney’s support would go to former Florida governor John E. “Jeb” Bush, he said. “Jeb did well at 16 percent, but with 14 percent undecided, he still has not made his case.”
“Walker has a national reputation and when he won in Wisconsin last time, he won big against an excellent candidate, especially groomed and marketed to be a not-so liberal alternative,” he said. “We are talking about Wisconsin, where Walker governs like a conservative. It just goes to show he has charisma.”
Kentucky’s Sen. Randal H. Paul was the choice of 11 percent, he said.
“Rand Paul has a different message, just about moved to New Hampshire and has people around him that used to work for Bob Smith,” he said. “With the undecideds at 14 percent there is room for Paul to make up ground.”
“It was not reflected in the poll, but we really believe that Mike Huckabee needs to be reckoned with in this race,” he said. “In 2008, he ran under the radar and ended up winning Iowa and finishing second to John McCain in the final delegate count–in the storefront and coffee shop politics of the New Hampshire primary, Huckabee could do very well.”
On the Democratic side, Kaplan said the race is over and Hillary Clinton won.
“Clinton is not really running yet, she is jogging and she is one visit to the state away from reaching 50 percent,” he said.
“Elizabeth Warren is the buzz with people who report on buzz, she does not the buzz with regular New Hampshire Democrats–Warren is from Massachusetts and half of New Hampshire is part of a Warren-loving Boston media market– her 25 percent is very disappointing,” he said.
In addition to Warren’s failure to launch, Clinton’s numbers are very strong, he said.
“In the year before the 2008 New Hampshire primary, Hillary never had numbers about 40 percent,” Kaplan said. “She was tracking 21-25-19 percent, and she eventually won with 39 percent.”
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