Romney, Santorum Tied in Arizona: Poll

Mitt's lead disappears

By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff

Posted Feb 21, 2012 5:57 PM CST

(Newser) – A week ahead of the Arizona primary, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum are virtually tied, a CNN/Time/ORC poll finds. Romney has 36% support among likely voters, while Santorum has 32%—but the gap between them is within the poll's margin of error. Some 18% are set to vote for Newt Gingrich, 6% plan to vote for Ron Paul, and 6% aren't sure. Earlier polls put Romney further ahead of his fellow candidates, CNN notes.

"Arizona Republicans display many of the same ideological divisions that drove the results in earlier primaries and caucuses," says a pollster. Santorum is ahead among evangelicals but struggles with non-evangelicals, while Romney is ahead among urban Republicans, women, and white-collar workers. The former governor does well with GOPers outside the Tea Party, but Santorum leads among supporters of the movement. (Turns out he looks good to beer makers, too.) A third of voters say they could change their mind—and perhaps tomorrow's debate, the last before the primaries in Arizona and Michigan, will prompt some shifting.

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney shake hands at the end of the Republican presidential candidate debate in Charleston, S.C., Thursday, Jan. 19, 2012.   (AP Photo/David Goldman)
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