Gingrich opens enormous 21-point lead over Romney in new poll

Alexis Levinson | Political Reporter

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has taken the GOP field by storm, and now leads former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney by 21 points, according to a Rasmussen poll released Thursday.

The nationwide poll found Gingrich with 38 percent of the vote, while Romney got 17 percent. No other candidate broke double digits, suggesting that, for now at least, the field has narrowed to Romney and Gingrich, the latest incarnation of the anti-Romney.

If businessman Herman Cain were to drop out of the race, in the wake of the latest allegations of sexual misconduct, his 8 percent of the vote would split, bumping Gingrich to 42 percent and Romney to 19 percent.

Gingrich and Romney are almost equally popular — 71 percent of Republicans say they hold a favorable opinion of Gingrich, while just 24 percent hold an unfavorable position; compared to 67 percent favorability for Romney, and 26 percent unfavorable.

The poll is based on a survey of 1,000 likely Republicans on November 30.

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