Romney leads among likely 2016 Iowa Republican caucusgoers in new poll

Iowa Republicans are hoping Mitt Romney will change his mind about running for president in 2016.

Despite the 2012 Republican nominee’s continued assertions that he will not run for president again, Romney is still the top pick for likely Iowa Republican 2016 caucusgoers, according to a Bloomberg Politics/Des Moines Register Iowa poll released Tuesday.

Romney was the top vote-getter in the poll with 17 percent and Dr. Ben Carson, a conservative neurosurgeon who has never held public office, came in second with 11 percent.

Carson told Fox News’ Sean Hannity Monday night that the chances of him running are “50/50.”

Iowa Republicans were less enthusiastic about other potential candidates, most of whom currently hold public office and are better nationally recognized.

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul came in third in the poll with 10 percent, but New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush failed to make waves with 6 percent and 4 percent each.

The poll results came a day after Romney’s wife Ann insisted to the Los Angeles Times that there was no chance of a third Romney presidential bid.

“Done,” she said. “Completely. Not only Mitt and I are done, but the kids are done. Done. Done. Done.”

On the Democratic side, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had a wide lead on the competition with 53 percent. Massachussets Sen. Elizabeth Warren came in second with 10 percent.