Republicans in Texas want Mike Huckabee as the party’s presidential nominee in 2012, with GOP voters there preferring the former Arkansas governor to their own current governor, Rick Perry, by a nearly three to one ratio, according to a new PPP poll.
In the poll, 24% of respondents said Huckabee was their first choice for the party nod. Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich each notched 17%, while Ron Paul and Mitt Romney tied at 10%. Perry trailed the pack at 9% despite being immensely popular with the GOP base in his home state. Sixty-five percent of Republican voters there approve of Perry’s job performance, versus 26% who disapprove, according to the poll.
Perry, who just won reelection in November, has stated that he does not intend to run for President. Yet he made a national name for himself last year, criticizing the federal government and going on cable news shows to promote his book. Then there’s the recent National Review report that Perry has been polling outside Texas to gauge his chances of a 2012 bid. An adviser to Perry denied that report.
There was little change in the poll when PPP dropped Perry form the slate of choices. Huckabee remained on top, but with an improved 25%, while Palin climbed four points to 21%. Gingrich and Romney stayed put at 17% and 10% respectively, while Paul dipped one point to 9%.
The PPP poll was conducted January 14-16 among 400 Republican voters. It has a margin of error of 4.9%.