The Southern Republican Leadership Convention held their traditional Presidential Straw Poll for the upcoming Republican Primaries in 2012 over the weekend; a winner has been crowned, and I expect some heads will shake in disbelief as to who finished second.
439 votes (24%) - Mitt Romney.
438 votes (24%) - Ron Paul.
330 votes (18%) - Sarah Palin.
321 votes (18%) - Newt Gingrich.
80 votes (4%) - Mike Huckabee.
58 votes (3%) - Mike Pence.
54 votes (3%) - Tim Pawlently.
41 votes (2%) - Rick Santorum.
3 votes (1%) - Gary Johnson.
What does this mean for the 2012 Republican Primaries?
1. Romney and Paul have well organized networks of support, though Romney is more likely to receive the enthusiastic support of the other 52% of Conservative candidates and their supporters than Ron Paul.
2. Palin and Gingrich will have real power during the Primaries, if either one of them decide against a run for the Nomination; they could decide who wins the Nomination.
3. Huckabee received 80 votes from the Southern Republican leadership convention, which further erodes his 2012 Presidential hopes, from a realistic viewpoint.
Also, I find it interesting that Governor Barbour of Mississippi is not among the "second tier" of Republican candidates, considering his experience and Conservative credentials; now he would make a strong candidate from a strong state.
Results from Wilson Research Strategies