It’s one poll from a short time period, but a new Rasmussen national survey shows former House Speaker Newt Gingrich making a big move in the Republican primary race compared to his latest performances in public polls. The new Ras, a snap poll conducted Tuesday, shows Gingrich just three points behind former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who leads the sample with 30 percent.
The one major change in the race was Gingrich’s impressive performance in Monday night’s debate in South Carolina. Newt has been in a free fall since he was hammered by negative ads in Iowa, eventually finishing only fourth in both the Hawkeye state and in New Hampshire. Without the money to effectively respond on TV, Gingrich has made the most of the debates, and he didn’t miss on Monday night. A Ras poll of South Carolina showed him down 14 in the state during the day on Martin Luther King Day, but if Wednesday’s national numbers are any indication, he may be looking at a resurgence.
The TPM Poll Average of the national GOP race shows Romney with about a nine point lead, but Gingrich starting to close the gap again: