Newt Gingrich is still flying high in national polls, but there are signs his big lead in Iowa is collapsing. There’s also been a huge shift in momentum on the highly followed Intrade betting market. Just looks at these two charts that show the odds of GOP candidates winning the party’s nomination — and what’s been happening over the past few days.
Romney’s lead has exploded from around 4 points to around 25 points. Now Romney is still way down from last month when he was in the low 70s. But he seems to have found a floor and has begun to claw his way back. What happened? Well, lots of conservatives have been highly critical of Gingrich’s time as House speaker in the 1990s. The National Review just put up this editorial: “Against Gingrich.” Gingrich had another scuffle with Paul Ryan over entitlement reform. And his slam against Romney’s business record struck many Republicans as reminiscent of Obama-style class-warfare tactics. Iowa seems wide open right now and if Gingrich fails to win it by a wide margin, it seems unlikely that Romney would lose New Hampshire, save for a huge surge by Ron Paul or Jon Huntsman.
UPDATE: This Iowa new poll from Rasmussen further validates the Intrade numbers: