To all the polls coming out in Rick Santorum's favor yesterday, there is yet another this morning from the New York Times/CBS confirming the rise, this time leading Mitt Romney nationwide by 3 points. From the Caucus blog this morning:
Rick Santorum has begun soaring among Republican primary voters, erasing Mitt Romney’s lead in the race for the party’s presidential nomination.
Santorum is the least searched-upon candidate on Google, but that may be because people don't want to see what they'll find there. But here too Santorum is getting the last laugh on Romney. Turns out he has a Google Problem too. From the Atlantic:
Yes, it's a little bit immature, but search "Romney" on Google and you'll see spreadingromney.com high up on your results (right behind Mitt Romney's Wikipedia page this morning; image below) with this definition: "1. To defecate in terror 2. Former Governor Mitt Romney." This is a reference to "Crate-Gate," the story of how Romney's dog Seamus reacted to being strapped to the roof of the candidate's car.
There is still some shock that Santorum has seized frontrunner status in those polls (just look at the ferocity of his rise in the Michigan polls collected by TPM above). Protestors in Tacoma, Wash., clashed with him last night (though he knew he was walking into a highly-charged atmosphere there, on the same day the state legalized gay marriage). The head of the NYT's editorial board, Andy Rosenthal, watched his CPAC speech (where Santorum spoke "fluent right-winglish") and still can't believe he's atop the polls:
I’ve never thought Mitt Romney was much of a candidate, but will the Republicans actually nominate someone as far to the loony fringe as Mr. Santorum? It will be interesting to see how far Mr. Santorum can take this new surge of his. I’m sure that Mr. Obama’s team is hoping he can take it really far.
On Thursday, Mr. Santorum is scheduled to address theDetroit Economic Club, and aides said he would weave together his proposals and present them for the first time as a single, broad blueprint for promoting growth and bringing back jobs.
The goal is to compete with Mr. Romney on the issue that Michigan voters, and others, say matters to them the most. Mr. Romney, a former governor of Massachusetts and a private equity executive at Bain Capital, has based his campaign on his economic know-how and business acumen.
“The economy and jobs and unemployment are all that anybody talks about in Michigan, and Santorum needs to talk about them, too,” said Bill Ballenger, editor of a political newsletter called Inside Michigan Politics.
Romney may be on his heels in Michigan, but his campaign is built for the long haul and has plenty of institutional advantages. One of them is in Indiana, where the fate of his place on the state's May 8 ballot may be up to the four-member Indiana Election Commission . . . which is led by the co-chair of the Romney campaign in the state. (Indy Star)