Romney Has Big Lead in Texas, Survey Finds

Mitt Romney at a campaign rally at Competitive Edge Manufacturing in Des Moines, Iowa, on Jan. 2, 2012.
Mitt Romney at a campaign rally at Competitive Edge Manufacturing in Des Moines, Iowa, on Jan. 2, 2012.

Mitt Romney may be struggling in some key swing states, but there’s no slippage for him in conservative Texas, a new poll shows.

Thanks to a lopsided lead among white voters, Romney is leading President Obama 55-40, according to a poll from Wilson Perkins Allen Opinion Research, which carries out surveys for GOP candidates. That’s even higher than John McCain scored against Obama in 2008.

Chris Perkins, who is a partner at the research firm and served as the pollster for U.S. Senate hopeful Ted Cruz in his Republican primary victory over Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, said he expected a better showing for Obama after the Democratic National Convention.

The three-day telephone poll of likely Texas voters was conducted Sunday through Tuesday, plenty of time for any post-convention glow to reach the electorate.

“I thought the Obama number would be a little bit better,” Perkins said. “It wasn’t there. It’s kind of lining up to what 2008 did — if not better — for McCain.” McCain beat Obama 55-44 in Texas in 2008.

The survey showed Romney with 32 percent of the Hispanic vote, which mirrors national Latino numbers for the Republican candidate in the wake of his party's convention in Tampa, according to a recent poll. Romney got only 6 percent of the African-American vote in Texas, compared with 90 percent who favor Obama.

But Romney’s lead over Obama among white voters in Texas is nothing short of overwhelming — 77-17 percent in the survey — which helps to explain why Republican candidates are maintaining their electoral advantage here even as the minority population explodes.

Whites no longer make up a majority in Texas, but they composed 60 percent of the pool of likely voters in the survey.

In swing states, the white vote is more divided. For example, a recent Public Policy Polling survey from Ohio shows Obama only slightly behind Romney among white voters, 50 to 46 percent.

Perkins said his poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.2 percentage points and was not conducted for any candidate or entity.

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