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In Iowa, Gingrich Is Gaining Favor, New Poll Shows

On The Radar

Newt Gingrich enters the final four weeks of campaigning before the Iowa caucuses with Republican voters in the state viewing him as more prepared to be president than Mitt Romney, more attuned to their concerns and just as capable of defeating President Obama, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News Poll.

Gingrich Surges Ahead in Iowa

On The Radar

A month before the Republican nominating contest opens here, former Speaker Newt Gingrich holds a substantial lead among voters who say they are likely to participate in the Iowa caucuses, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll. Mr. Gingrich, whose presidential candidacy has steadily surged in recent weeks after a series of televised debates, won the support of 31 percent of Republicans and independents who say they will definitely or probably attend the Iowa caucuses on Jan. 3.

Gingrich Emerges as Clear Front-Runner in Iowa

On The Radar

Propelled by his debate performances and the demise of Herman Cain’s candidacy, former House speaker Newt Gingrich sits atop the Republican presidential field in Iowa with a clear lead over his closest competitors, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. Gingrich, according to the survey, has advantages that extend well beyond the horse race that put him in an enviable position in the final weeks before the state’s Jan. 3 caucuses, which serve as the formal start of the long nominating season.

More Like Reagan?

On The Radar

Conservatives prize constancy above all else, but if Republicans are really faced with a choice between Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney, this will be a nomination defined by reversals. Nominating Gingrich will require conservatives to embrace a sweeping ideological reversal. Nominating Romney will require Republicans to embrace a candidate who is defined by personal reversals.
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Gingrich Has Strong Lead over Romney in South Carolina

On The Radar

Newt Gingrich has a commanding lead over Mitt Romney in South Carolina, according to a new poll, results that come as the former Georgia Congressman has gained momentum in other key early states. The Winthrop University poll results, based on interviews with more than 1,000 registered voters in the Palmetto state, show Gingrich grabbing 38 percent of the vote and Mitt Romney lagging by double digits at 22 percent.

Will Cain Endorse Gingrich?

On The Radar

With Herman Cain out of the race for the GOP nomination, pundits and politicos are turning their attention to which of his former competitors the plain-spoken former pizza executive might endorse. Speculation is focused on Newt Gingrich, who like Cain hails from Georgia and who was the most effusive of all the Republican hopefuls in praising Cain after the announcement Saturday that he was suspending his campaign.

Can Romney Prevail if Few Are Excited About Him?

On The Radar

Talk to any Republican leaders or strategists and they will quickly point to the enthusiasm gap between their voters and President Obama’s as one reason they believe they will prevail next November. Listen to any Republican voters and a different enthusiasm gap appears. They are not truly excited about any of their likeliest nominees, least of all Mitt Romney. The former Massachusetts governor is rapidly becoming a one-man political experiment, testing the theory that empathy and the ability to connect with voters are prerequisites for a winning campaign.

The Endless GOP Audition for President

On The Radar

It's an audition without end, because the Republicans still can't figure out how to cast the lead role. Here's how the internal discussion goes: We need someone who is a true conservative. We need someone who is right on the matters we care about -- the deficit, immigration, cultural issues. We need someone we can trust, who won't betray us. And, by the way, we also need someone who can win.

Battle of the Blemishes

On The Radar

The Republican presidential race is now dominated by giants: the giant flaws of the front-runners. With 36 days to go before the first votes are cast in Iowa, Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich stand atop the field—familiar, formidable, and flawed. Romney has a history of shifting positions and supported the individual health care mandate. Gingrich has some of those same flaws plus a complicated personal history. The question for voters choosing between the two: Which candidate’s troubles are too big?

PBS NewsHour: Political Checklist: Shifting GOP Primary Calendar and Rick Perry's Sign Problem

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Senior correspondents Judy Woodruff and Gwen Ifill and Political Editor David Chalian are back for another edition of the Political Checklist. This week they consider whether the accelerated Republican primary calendar benefits the front-runner candidates at the expense of candidates who need more time to make their case to Republican voters.

They also discuss a potential problem for Texas Gov. Rick Perry's campaign: The Washington Post has a story about the presence of a racially charged sign on a stone outside of a property Perry rented for hunting for many years in Texas. Judy thinks this will be a problem for the campaign, while Gwen questions why the Perrys didn't remove the rock.