- The Washington Times - Monday, November 24, 2014

Mitt Romney, former Massachusetts governor and 2012 GOP presidential nominee, leads a host of potential Republican presidential candidates in a hypothetical 2016 GOP primary match-up in the early state of New Hampshire.

Mr. Romney gets 30 percent of the GOP primary vote, followed by Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky at 11 percent, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at 9 percent and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush at 8 percent, the Bloomberg Politics/Saint Anselm poll said.

Other potential GOP contenders receiving votes are retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson at 6 percent; former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas at 5 percent; Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal at 3 percent; and Texas Gov. Rick Perry at 2 percent.

Mr. Romney, who has said repeatedly he isn’t running, has a 77 percent/21 percent favorable/unfavorable split among GOP primary voters and a 47 percent/48 percent split among general election voters.

When Mr. Romney was removed as a choice, Mr. Christie and Mr. Paul were tied for first at 16 percent apiece, followed by Mr. Bush at 14 percent.

On the Democratic side, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, whose win in New Hampshire in 2008 helped rejuvenate her primary campaign, leads with 62 percent of the vote, with Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts the closest to Mrs. Clinton at 13 percent.

Eighty-eight percent of Democratic primary voters have a favorable opinion of Mrs. Clinton, compared to 9 percent who have an unfavorable opinion, and she has a 51 percent/45 percent favorable/unfavorable split among general election voters.

The survey of likely 2016 general election voters was conducted Nov. 12-18. The margin of error for 407 Republican primary voters and 404 Democratic primary voters is plus or minus 4.9 percentage points.

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