News / USA

Romney, Paul Lead Republican Presidential Hopefuls in Iowa Race

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney (file photo)
Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney (file photo)

Republican presidential contenders are frantically reaching out to voters in Iowa ahead of the state's presidential caucuses. Candidates trailing behind in opinion polls Friday, such as Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and former congressman Newt Gingrich, were working to erode the lead of former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.

Romney's bid received a boost Friday from the popular governor of the state of New Jersey, who was in Iowa to campaign with the candidate.

While Romney is seen as the overall front-runner in the race for the Republican nomination for the presidency, rival Ron Paul has risen in the polls just days before the Iowa caucuses, the country's first nominating contest for the 2012 presidential election.

The U.S. presidential election campaign kicks off in the Midwestern state of Iowa on January 3, with seven Republican candidates trying to win enough voter support to represent their party in the November 6, 2012, presidential election. U.S. President Barack Obama has no challenger for the Democratic Party nomination, but still must go through the caucus and primary processes.

The Iowa caucuses are the first test on the electoral calendar. Some candidates suffer large enough defeats that they drop out of the race.  Many political analysts view the state as a cross section of the United States in terms of ideology and party preference.  However, a win in Iowa does not guarantee a candidate will receive his or her party’s nomination.

Iowa Quick Facts compared with the U.S. total:


- Population (2010): 3 million; U.S.: 308.5 million

- Residents under 18 years old (2010): 24 percent; U.S.: 24 percent

- Residents 65 years and over (2010): 15 percent; U.S.: 13 percent

- White residents (2010): 91 percent; U.S.: 72.5 percent

- Black residents  (2010): 3 percent; U.S.: 13 percent

- Asian residents  (2010): 2 percent; U.S. 5 percent

- Residents of Hispanic or Latino origin (2010): 5 percent; U.S.: 16 percent

- Residents of two or more races (2010) 2 percent; U.S.: 3 percent

- Foreign-born residents (2005-2009): 4 percent; U.S.: 12.5 percent

- Per capita income in past 12 months (2009): $25,000; U.S.: $27,000

- Residents below poverty level (2009): 12 percent; U.S.: 14 percent

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

An NBC/Marist survey shows Romney with 23 percent of the support among likely participants in the January 3 caucuses.  But Paul, a congressman from Texas, was just behind with 21 percent.

Romney held a morning event where he criticized U.S. President Barack Obama and promised change in Washington and a new direction for the economy and the country.  New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who at one time had been considered a possible candidate, appeared at the rally to support Romney.

“What a guy, that guy is. Isn’t he amazing? Gosh, we’re so lucky to have him in our party and leading a great state like New Jersey, fighting the battles to take back America," said Romney.

Former senator Rick Santorum, who has seen a recent jump in the polls, says he remains confident the caucuses, regarded as an important indicator of nationwide prospects, will turn in his favor.

The NBC/Marist poll puts him in third, with 15 percent support.

While the winner of the Iowa caucus may not go on to win a party nomination, or the presidency, a poor showing in the state may force some candidates to drop out of the race.

Former House speaker Gingrich, the latest one-time favorite to fade away, has seen his support tumble in Iowa, although he continues to campaign hard.  

He teared up at an event when talking about his late mother, remembering her as a happy person who loved life, but who also suffered late in her life from bipolar disease and depression.

The only woman in the field of candidates, Michele Bachmann, a U.S. representative from Minnesota, greeted supporters at an eatery in the town of Early.  Bachmann, who has seen single-digit support in Iowa, pledged tax reform and a repeal of President Obama's health care reform.  She predicted she would do well in the caucuses.

"And something else that I’ve highlighted in the course of this presidential race is my commitment, both as a federal tax attorney and as someone who’s created and runs a successful business is the abolition of the tax code," said Bachmann. "This is leadership that I intend to bring to this issue in abolishing the tax code."

Jon Huntsman, who was President Obama's ambassador to China, is focusing his campaign on New Hampshire, the second state scheduled to vote on a nominee.  That northeastern state holds its primary on January 10.

In the latest survey in that state, Romney holds a strong lead, supported by 44 percent of likely primary voters, followed again by Paul.

Where is Iowa located in the United States?

Iowa map

You May Like

Westgate Mall Attack Survivors Confront Painful Memories

On anniversary of terror attack, survivors discuss how they have coped with trauma they experienced that day More

Iraqi Kurdish Leader: Protect Syrian City

Islamic State fighters are besieging Kobani, also known as Ayn al-Arab, after seizing at least 21 surrounding villages in a major assault against city on Syria's northern border with Turkey More

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

Conservationists hail ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015 More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctionsi
X
September 18, 2014 2:28 AM
A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.
Video

Video China Muslims Work to Change Perceptions After Knife Attacks

China says its has sentenced three men to death and one woman to life in prison for a deadly knife attack in March that left more than 30 dead and 140 injured. Beijing says Muslim militants from China's restive western region of Xinjiang carried out the attacks. Now, more than six months after the incident, residents in the city are still coping with the aftermath. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Kunming.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid