Gingrich surges ahead in Republican race: NBC/WSJ poll

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has taken a commanding lead in the race for the Republican presidential nomination, hitting the 40 percent mark for the first time in the campaign, according to an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll released on Tuesday.

Gingrich is the first choice of 40 percent of Republican primary voters compared with 23 percent support for former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, the poll found.

But the survey also found deep unease with the Republican front-runner among independents and swing voters who normally decide presidential elections, the Wall Street Journal reported.

In a hypothetical contest with President Barack Obama, Gingrich trails the Democratic incumbent by more than 10 percentage points (40 percent to 51 percent) while Obama leads Romney by 2 percentage points (47 percent to 45 percent).

via Gingrich surges ahead in Republican race: NBC/WSJ poll | Reuters.

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