Cain Pulls Even with Perry In Texas, Says University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll

Texas Gov. Rick Perry is now statistically tied with GOP frontrunner Herman Cain in Perry’s home state of  Texas, according to a new poll released by the University of Texas.

In the poll that shows Mitt Romney, Michele Bachman and other Republican presidential candidates well behind in the Lone Star state, Cain has slightly edged out Perry by garnering 27 percent to the governor’s 26 percent among Texas' registered Republican voters. However while Cain leads Perry in the poll, the Texas governor is still well within the margin of error

"Texans appear to be subject to the national dynamic," said Jim Henson, who runs the Texas Politics Project and co-directs the UT/Tribune poll, according to the Texas Tribune. "And the dynamic when we were out in the field was that Herman Cain was ascendant. He had really grabbed the attention of the conservatives in the GOP primary race in particular. And we saw that reflected in this poll."

Perry, who was just recently the GOP frontrunner, has seen his chances of winning the GOP nomination slip after being attacked by Romney and Bachman during a heated debate in September for his stance on immigration. The two candidates jumped on Perry’s policy allowing the children of undocumented immigrants to pay in-state tuition rates at Texas colleges and claimed that the policy made the state a  “magnet” for people crossing the border from Mexico
Since then Perry has tried to win back his previous support while watching Herman Cain rocket up through the polls.

The University of Texas/Texas Tribune poll did not break down the statistics in terms of ethnicity, but 18 percent of those polled considered themselves Latino in a state that is over 37 percent Hispanic, according to 2010 Census data.

"Maybe the most important number is that Cain is up 37 percent to 24 percent among the most conservative voters," said Daron Shaw, co-director of the poll, according to the Texas Tribune. "Perry wins with every other group."

What the poll does indicate is that Texans want to replace President Barack Obama in the White House. Texans would hypothetically vote 45 percent for Perry compared to 37 percent for Obama and in a match-up between Cain and Obama, the current GOP leader would beat Obama 40 percent to 35 percent.

Maybe the most important number is that Cain is up 37 percent to 24 percent among the most conservative voters.

— Daron Shaw, co-director of the poll.

Perry also scored high marks from Texans on his handling of the state’s economy, with 42 percent of eligible voters approving his fiscal policies. Only 28 percent approve of Obama's handling of the economy.

“The governor has made prosperity and his success in Texas a centerpiece of the campaign for the presidency," Henson told the Texas Tribune. "It’s going to be very hard not to look at this and assess those claims somewhat. And at the very least see what his own constituents — and they are his constituents since he’s still in the seat of governor — think about his performance.”

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