Election Oracle: Could Newt Win Florida?
While Mitt Romney has opened a commanding 14-point lead in Florida in a Quinnipiac poll released Monday morning, Newt Gingrich continues to generate a more favorable conversation online—a good sign for his chances of picking up support from the one-in-three voters there who are yet to fully commit to a candidate.While both men have had sub-zero favorability ratings for the last week as they’ve amped up their attacks on one another following Gingrich’s South Carolina win, the former speaker’s-22 rating gives him a 15-point advantage over Romney in the Election Oracle’s measure of the online conversation.
To determine favorability ratings, the Election Oracle tracks 40,000 news sites, blogs, message boards, Twitter feeds, and other social-media sources to analyze what millions of people are saying about the candidates—and determines whether the Web buzz is positive or negative. That rating is weighted, along with the Real Clear Politics polling average and the latest InTrade market data, to calculate each candidate’s chances of winning the Republican nomination. (See methodology here.)
We'll see if Gingrich’s lead in favorability rating translates into an advantage among late-deciding voters. That in turn could help answer what’s now the crucial question in this incredibly volatile primary season: If Gingrich does in fact lose Florida, will he have a fourth act?