The news in the race for the GOP nomination keeps getting better and better for Democrats. A new Rasmussen survey has found that Republican voters consider Newt Gingrich their best shot to beat Obama.
According to the Rasmussen survey, 49% of Republican voters consider their strongest general election candidate against Barack Obama. Only 24% of these same voters think Mitt Romney would be the most electable nominee. To demonstrate how upside down this race truly is, consider that in the very same poll, Mitt Romney leads Obama in a head to head match up 45%-42%. Gingrich trailed Obama, 45%-40%. The margin of error was 3%, so Obama and Romney were tied, but Obama led Gingrich by a net two points.
The message this poll is sending is that Romney is still the best candidate among all voters to give Obama a tough match up, but a majority of Republicans don’t want Mitt Romney to be their nominee. They GOP primary electorate is currently in the process of convincing itself that Newt Gingrich is more electable than Mitt Romney. Polls be damned. GOP primary voters want a candidate that they can feel good about supporting, and that guy isn’t Mitt Romney.
All of the pundits who assumed that Mitt Romney would cake walk to the nomination based their prediction on the notion that Republican primary voters would make a rational decision based on electability. Newsflash, voters are not rational. As the American electorate has become less informed, they tend to make their decision making process has become more emotional than intellectual. Mitt Romney is campaigning for their heads, but Newt Gingrich knows how to appeal to their hearts.
Democrats should be overjoyed, but not surprised that GOP primary voters consider Newt Gingrich electable. Remember, these are the same voters who thought that Christine O’Donnell, Sharron Angle, and Joe Miller were electable candidates for the Senate in 2010.
What this all means for the Democratic Party is that the GOP is a few short weeks from setting the wheels in motion to make Newt Gingrich their nominee. Everyone who isn’t a Republican primary voter understands that Newt Gingrich would be the most unelectable Republican nominee since Barry Goldwater in 1964, but this little fact may not stop the GOP from nominating Newt anyway.
It may take a major campaign slip up or gaffe to derail Gingrich. Although he is capable of self-destructing, Gingrich stands to benefit from the fact that most primary voters don’t want Mitt Romney to be the nominee.
Romney’s electability argument is fading fast, and Republicans are inching closer to giving Democrats their dream general election match up against Newt Gingrich.