The new survey of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents shows Paul with 13 percent support, barely trailing former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney (17 percent), with Texas Governor Rick Perry, who only recently announced his candidacy, strongly in first place, with 29 percent.
This puts Ron Paul three points ahead of Rep. Michele Bachmann (10 percent), who narrowly beat Paul (by less than 1 percent) in the Ames, Iowa Straw Poll on August 13. The other contestants, some of whom have been touted as "top tier" in the past, fade into the distance in the new Gallup Poll: Herman Cain, 4 percent; Newt Gingrich, 4 percent; Rick Santorum, 3 percent; Jon Huntsman, 1 percent; Tim Pawlenty, zero percent (he dropped out).
Ron Paul's showing in recent polls is all the more remarkable considering the extraordinary media bias against him, both in terms of ignoring him, as well as skewing what little media coverage he is given with a decidedly negative spin. The new Gallup Poll results came just a day after a Rassmussen Poll showed Dr. Paul running almost dead even against President Obama. In a theoretical matchup between the two, Obama barely beat Paul, 39 percent to 38 percent, among likely voters.
The Rasmussen battle scenario between Obama and Paul completely contradicts the claims of so-called media "experts" such as CNN's Candy Crowley, who claimed that polls show Ron Paul and Michele Bachmann are "the two worst" candidates in a head-to-head match-up against Obama.
As reported here ("O'Reilly's "No Spin" Spin on Ron Paul"), it also delivers a serious smackdown to the pompous bloviations of Fox's Bill O'Reilly and Dick Morris and their false claim that a Ron Paul GOP candidacy would guarantee four more years of Obama rule, while Perry, Romney or Bachman could, allegedly, defeat Obama.
The new Gallup Poll cited above is also significant in that it confirms Ron Paul as registering double-digit support among voters, a benchmark that media critics had used to dismiss the viability of his campaign. The truth is, though, that Paul had already posted double-digit support in several previous national polls, media claims to the contrary notwithstanding. As of this writing (August 26), the website RealClearPolitics.com, in a compilation of results from various polling organizations, shows Ron Paul registering double-digit support in an earlier August Gallup Poll (11 percent), a CNN/Opinion Research Poll (12 percent), and a USA Today/Gallup Poll (14 percent). Paul's composite percentage at RealClearPolitics.com is now 9.7 percent — which, rounded off to the nearest percentage point, is in the double-digit category. Paul's polling numbers are on the upswing, but with the composite below 10 percent the talking heads in the media have been able to claim he's mired in the single digits and to use this claim as evidence that "Paul can't win."
In addition to his almost-first-place win in Iowa and his robust showings in the Gallup and Rasmussen surveys, Ron Paul has also topped most other contenders in another critical barometer of political viability: fundraising ability. He is second only to Mitt Romney, having just raised $1.8 million in his latest "money bomb."
However, Ron Paul has raised his money in many small contributions, in contrast to Romney, who has drawn on his own considerable fortune, as well as large contributions from Wall Street executives and corporate CEOs.
Photo of Ron Paul: AP Images