Rasmussen is out with some startling new numbers today.
For the first time this year, Texas Governor Rick Perry leads President Obama in a national Election 2012 survey. Other Republican candidates trail the president by single digits.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows Perry picking up 44% of the vote while the president earns support from 41%. Given the margin of sampling error (+/- 3 percentage points) and the fact that the election is more than a year away, the race between the two men is effectively a toss-up. Just over a week ago, the president held a three-point advantage over Perry. (To see question wording, click here.)
Perry leads by nine among men but trails by five among women. Among voters under 30, the president leads while Perry has the edge among those over 30. The president leads Perry by 16 percentage points among union members while Perry leads among those who do not belong to a union.
Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney currently trails the president by four percentage points, 43% to 39%. That’s a slight improvement for the Republican compared to a week ago.
Lots of cautions are in order here. It’s early, so early that we’re still several months from the first primary. Gov. Perry hasn’t appeared in a debate yet. He’s set to appear in his first one next week, not coincidentally the very debate that the president tried bigfooting with his jobs speech.
But on the flip side, Perry has only been in the race for less than three weeks now. In that time, he has vaulted to the top of the GOP field and now has his first national lead over President Obama. It’s not hard to figure out why: Jobs. Joe Biden’s three-letter word is the president’s greatest weakness. We have thousands lining up just for a chance at a job interview these days, while the president keeps growing his job-killing regulatory state. Scenes like that explain the biggest part of his weakness, and Perry’s jobs record in Texas provides a handy answer.