Former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain, long considered a second-tier Republican presidential candidate before his recent surge in the polls, now enjoys a slight lead over President Barack Obama according to Rasmussen Reports.
In the poll, Cain leads President Obama in a head-to-head contest 43 percent to 41 percent. All other Republican candidates included in recent Rasmussen surveys trail President Obama, including former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who is viewed by many to be the GOP’s most electable option in 2012.
Cain leads Obama among men but trails narrowly among women, the poll finds. Obama wins the youth vote, but Cain beats Obama among respondents over 40, and has a 16-point lead among those over 65.
Cain’s popularity among independents is what gives him the edge against Obama. Only 72 percent of Republicans would vote for Cain, as opposed to 82 percent of Democrats who support Obama. However, Cain has a sizable 19-point lead among voters not affiliated with either party.
“Cain now has the chance to make the case for why he should be the challenger to Mitt Romney,” said Rasmussen Reports President Scott Rasmussen in a statement released with the poll. “Many others have auditioned for the role and fallen flat, and it remains to be seen whether Cain’s fate will be similar.”
The survey was conducted October 14 – 15. The margin of error for the poll is +/- 3 percentage points.