When I write about the polling, I hesitate to say more than I have to about the events going on that drive the numbers. I risk introducing unnecessary bias due to mixing the math with my own observations.
But the Herman Cain harassment story is the story right now. Two new pre-debate polls are out. Cain is down further, Rick Perry is back down after Cain attacked him, so guess who's on the rise, in second or tied for second in both polls? Newt Gingrich.
The facts: CBS polled 382 GOP primary voters, MoE claimed at 5, mobile and land-line handling. Marist polled 374 Republican and Repubican-leaning reigstered voters. Mobile and landline. MoE 5.5.
CBS news's poll is stunning. Cain leads, but he's down to 18, another worst result in weeks. Mitt Romeny is also way down, at 15 and in a tie with Newt Gingrich for second. Rick Perry's double-digit renaissance ends, as he falls back to 8.
Meanwhile, McClatchy and Marist show Romney steady as ever at 23, within his usual range. Gingrich again shows at second though, with a 19 point showing that's his highest since some weird PPP polling in August 2010. Cain's still down, to 17, which shows third place in this poll. Perry? Single digit oblivion.
Perry had better hope that "Oops" got people thinking kind thoughts about him again. Cain had better hope that somehow his bleeding stopped once his accusers came out into the open. Gingrich had better hope he survives the coming vetting process. Romney had better hope none of the above happen and he takes a default victory.
PS: My apologies to Newt Gingrich. I simply lack the time today create a graphic of him to put up with this post. I'll get it next time.