Cain places second in new Iowa poll
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney would fare better against President Obama in Iowa than Texas Gov. Rick Perry, a new poll indicates, and Iowans are warming to presidential hopeful Herman Cain.
The NBC News/Marist poll has Obama receiving 43 percent of the votes in Iowa against Romney, who would attract 40 percent; and Obama defeating Rick Perry, 46 percent to 37 percent. The margin of error is 1.8 percent.
Cain attracted support from 20 percent of likely caucusgoers in the Hawkeye State, second only to the 23 percent Romney garnered in the poll. Another 16 percent are still undecided, while Newt Gingrich and Michele Bachmann each have 10 percent support. The margin of error is 5.1 percent.
But the NBC News/Marist poll also found that 56 percent of potential Republican caucusgoers only somewhat support a candidate or might vote differently.
The poll also shows 68 percent of the potential Republican caucus electorate in Iowa are protestant; 41 percent self-identify as fundamentalist or evangelical Christian; and 45 percent are college graduates.
The most important quality to that group of potential caucusgoers is whether a candidate shares their values, at 30 percent. Another 29 percent think being closest on issues is most important, while 20 percent rate a candidate’s ability to defeat Obama as most important.
Forty-seven percent of Iowans disapprove of the job Barack Obama is doing as president, while 42 percent approve. Another 68 percent think the country is headed in the wrong direction, compared to 21 percent that think it’s going in the right direction.