EXCLUSIVE POLL: Santorum leads Romney in close Michigan Republican Presidential Primary race

(WXYZ) - The red hot Republican presidential race in Michigan is now a virtual dead heat between Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney.

In an exclusive WXYZ/Detroit Free Press poll conducted by EPIC MRA, former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum leads former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney by only 3 points - 37% to 34%.  But with a margin of error of +/- 4.9%, either candidate could win next Tuesday's Michigan GOP Primary.

The poll surveyed 400 respondents who said they are likely to vote in Tuesday's Republican Presidential Primary.

If the election were today, those polled would give Texas Congressman Ron Paul 10% of their vote. Former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich would receive 7%.   

The poll found that 12% of Michigan Republican voters are still undecided.

37% Rick Santorum
34% Mitt Romney
10% Ron Paul
7% Newt Gingrich
12% Undecided/Refused

Fifty-four percent of those polled say they are certain to vote for their chosen candidates. Santorum and Romney are fighting for people in the middle.  Forty-five percent say they could change their mind between now and Tuesday.

Bernie Porn, Channel 7 pollster and President of EPIC MRA, believes that, "A high voter turnout favors Mitt Romney and a low voter turnout favors Rick Santorum."

"Among GOP voters," he says, "Santorum leads Romney by 41%. Among Independent voters, Romney leads Santorum by 30%."

The winner will be determined by which candidate does the best job getting their supporters to the polls.

The poll shows that Romney is more popular in Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb counties and Santorum draws his strength from voters in central, western, and northern Michigan as well as from those who support the Tea Party movement.

Proof of how see-saw the Republican presidential race has become was obvious when we asked the people we surveyed who would be their second choice.  Twenty-three percent said Mitt Romney, 23% said Rick Santorum, followed by Newt Gingrich with 19%, and Ron Paul with 12%. Twenty percent are undecided.

The majority of our respondents describe themselves as Republican, conservative, and pro-life.  The poll was conducted February 18 – 21.

 

COMPLETE POLL QUESTIONS AND RESULTS - Margin of error +/- 4.9%

Do you have a favorable or unfavorable opinion of each person?

Rick Snyder
Favorable: 64%
Unfavorable: 25%
Undecided: 11%

Mitt Romney
Favorable: 58%
Unfavorable: 32%
Undecided: 10%

Newt Gingrich
Favorable: 35%
Unfavorable: 55%
Undecided: 10%

Rick Santorum
Favorable: 62%
Unfavorable: 27%
Undecided: 10%

Ron Paul
Favorable: 41%
Unfavorable: 47%
Undecided: 11%

Clark Durant
Favorable: 9%
Unfavorable: 16%
Undecided: 28%

Pete Hoekstra
Favorable: 49%
Unfavorable: 23%
Undecided: 17%

 

When you voted by absentee ballot in the February 28th Republican presidential primary, which of the following candidates did you vote for?

38% Mitt Romney
25% Rick Santorum
20% Undecided/Refused
6% Newt Gingrich
6% Ron Paul
5% Other

 

If the election were held today and you had to decide right now, which candidate would you lean toward?

37% Rick Santorum
34% Mitt Romney
10% Ron Paul
7% Newt Gingrich
12% Undecided/Refused

 

Have you pretty much ruled out voting for any other candidate and decided that you are going to vote for the candidate you named, or, is it possible that you might still change your mind?

54% Certain to vote for candidate named and ruled out voting for others
45% Still might change mind
1% Undecided/Refused

 

Which candidate would be your second choice?

23% Mitt Romney
23% Rick Santorum
19% Newt Gingrich
12% Ron Paul
20% Undecided/Refused

 

Based on your personal experience or what you know or have heard or read, do you support or oppose the efforts of the Tea Party movement?

32% Strongly supports Tea Party movement
29% Somewhat supports Tea Party movement
61% TOTAL SUPPORT TEA PARTY
24% TOTAL OPPOSE TEA PARTY
7% Somewhat opposes Tea Party movement
17% Strongly opposes Tea Party movement
15% Undecided/Refused

 

Do you think of yourself as pro-choice, meaning that you support allowing women to have the right to an abortion, or do you consider yourself pro-life, meaning that you oppose abortions except where it is necessary to save the life of the mother?

32% Pro-choice
62% Pro-life
6% Undecided/Refused

 

Generally speaking, do you consider yourself a Republican or a Democrat?

73% TOTAL REPUBLICAN
10% TOTAL DEMOCRAT
15% Independent
2% Undecided/Refused

 

Thinking in political terms, do you consider yourself a Conservative, Moderate, or Liberal?

63% Conservative
28% Moderate
5% Liberal
4% Undecided/Refused

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