Newt Gingrich’s Organizational Struggles

The Huffington Posts’ Mark Blumenthal takes a snap-shot look at how each of the 2012 GOP presidential candidate’s campaigns are fairing from an organization perspective in the early nominating contests. From what I am hearing on the ground, Blumenthal’s assessments are relatively accurate. If Newt Gingrich wants have a realistic shot at winning the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, his campaign is going to have to kick it into high gear on the ground in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina in the very near future.

The Power Outsiders poll is an ongoing effort to reach out to local Republican activists, party officials and officeholders in the early primary and caucus states to observe the critical “invisible primary” that is usually a strong leading indicator of voters’ preferences in presidential nomination contests. This week, we interviewed 170 Power Outsiders, including 48 in Iowa, 51 in New Hampshire, 58 in South Carolina and 13 in Florida.

This week’s survey focused on perceptions of the campaigns, and included a question asking simply: Which candidate has the best campaign organization in your state? The results, shown in the table below, vary considerably by state. In Iowa, Ron Paul leads the way, with 35 percent judging his campaign as strongest, followed by Michele Bachmann (21 percent), Rick Santorum (15 percent) and Rick Perry (8). Again, the two national frontrunners, Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich, rank near the bottom.

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