Five point gain means Paul is tied in second place overall with Independents and Republicans.
Following his effective tied win in Iowa, GOP candidate Ron Paul has seen a surge in popularity nationally according to an influential poll released this week.
Paul is now tied for second place nationally among Republicans and Independents, according to the latest Reuters/Ipsos poll.
The Texas Congressman now stands at 17 percent, according to the poll, tied with Newt Gingrich. The notable trend, however, is that while Paul has jumped a full five percentage points since December, Gingrich has plummeted by 8 points.
Among Republican voters alone, Paul has jumped by 4 points nationally and now stands at 16 percent. Gingrich again slipped by 8 points among Republicans alone, leaving him at 20 percent.
Mitt Romney still holds a considerable lead with 29 percent among republicans and Independents and 30 percent among Republicans alone.
The poll was conducted before Ron Paul’s strong second place showing in New Hampshire. It now appears that Gingrich finished fifth in New Hampshire, behind Rick Santorum, with around 9 percent. Given these statistics, Paul is likely to surge further nationally and Gingrich is likely to slip even further.
Another notable finding from the poll is that Paul is second only to Romney when it comes to a head to head match up with Obama.
Obama bests Romney by 5 percentage points, 48 to 43. Paul falls short of Obama by 7 percentage points, 48 to 41. In comparison, Santorum loses by 11 percentage points, 51 to 40 and Gingrich loses by 15 percentage points, 53 to 38.
When factoring in Democrat voters who are disillusioned with Obama, Paul’s numbers will undoubtedly increase once more.
Indeed, as Neil Cavuto explains below, it is Ron Paul who is the major threat to Obama, more so than Mitt Romney:
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