A new poll keeps Mitt Romney tops in the minds of Wisconsin voters when it comes to the Republican presidential nomination.
In a new survey released Tuesday from Marquette University, former Gov. Mitt Romney is ahead of former Sen. Rick Santorum, 39 to 31 percent, respectively. Congressman Ron Paul pulled in 11 percent and former Congressman Newt Gingrich comes in at five percent.
Just had Romney leading Santorum 46 percent to 33 percent, but polls last month, from both Marquette University and Public Policy Polling each had Santorum in the lead by double-digits.
"We think it's encouraging, but it's only a poll," said Ted Kanavas, state director for the Romney campaign. "You know, Wisconsin is a competitive state, and April 3 is what matters so we're doing what we can to get the push over the finish line."
Marquette's poll also looks ahead to the November election. Given the current survey returns, even with his lead over the rest of the Republican field, Romney still trails President Barack Obama 43 percent to 48 percent. Santorum would also lose to Obama with the President edging out the former senator 51 to 39 percent.
Marquette Law School Poll Director Charles Franklin said the sharp swings in Wisconsin are indicative of primary wins in other states. Santorum was ahead in February possibly because of wins in other midwestern states like Minnesota and Missouri. Likwise, Romney may be leading now because of current wins in Ohio and Michigan.
"Wisconsin represents Santorum’s most important chance to win another Midwest victory, while for Romney continued success here would set up a showdown in Santorum’s home state of Pennsylvania,” Franklin said in a written analysis of the poll results released today.
Patch has calls into the Santorum campaign and will update the story with their comments as we get them.
Santorum recently appeared in several , and is event this weekend in Waukesha.
Closer to Home
This same Marquette University poll puts Gov. Scott Walker ahead of all Democratic challengers in a recall election but not by much.
Results show Walker leading Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett 47 to 45 percent and with a 49 to 45 percent lead over former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk. The governor has slightly larger leads over state Sen. Kathleen Vinehout at 49 to 41 percent and over Secretary of State Doug La Follette at 49 to 42 percent.
If the Democratic primary for governor were held today, Barrett would take all comers, leading Falk 36 to 29 percent. Vinehout and La Follette each come in at eight percent, but a not insignificant 17 percent say they are undecided.
Now, if Barrett is out of the picture, then Falk is the winner at 54 to 12 percent over Vinehout and 54 to 15 percent over La Follette. There, again, a number of respondents - 18 percent - list themselves as undecided.
The Republican presidential primary is April 3. Recall elections have been scheduled as May 8 for the primary and June 5 for the general election.