Early New Hampshire Poll: Romney Leads Big

Posted: Feb 15, 2011 9:12 AM
"Of course Romney leads in New Hampshire," you may say to yourself, "he's from a neighboring state and has great name recognition."  Quite so, but those things were equally true when lost the Granite State to you-know-who in 2008.  (Although that cycle's dynamic was different because of Mac's special relationship with New Hampshire voters, which even pre-dated Romney's governorship). Right now -- very, very early -- Mitt's picture is looking brighter; his lead is commanding:

The WMUR Granite State Poll shows Romney well out in front of other potential candidates, but a large majority of likely voters said they are still trying to decide who they will support.The poll shows 40 percent of likely Republican primary voters would vote for Romney, 10 percent would vote for former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, 7 percent favor former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, and 7 percent support former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee.  Another 6 percent prefer former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, 6 percent favor 2008 vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, 5 percent support U.S. Rep. and 2008 candidate Ron Paul, 3 percent support businessman Donald Trump, 1 percent favor former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, and 1 percent prefer Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour.

A 30 point cushion over your closest opponent is a nice spot to occupy, but don't expect Romney to coast.  Guess who led the New Hampshire Republican primary polls in late 2007?  There's a long way to go.